July 13, 2015
Parliament on Thursday 9th July approved six presidential nominees as contained in the Eighteenth Report of the Committee on Appointments and Public Service. These include three Judges, and Board Members of the National Insurance Company, SALPOST, and the Local Government Service Commission.
The following nominees were approved: Hon. P.C Alimamy Lahai Mansaray – Board Member, National Insurance Company; Hon. Momoh C. Koya – Board Member, SALPOST; Mr. Reginald Sydney Fynn Jnr. – Justice of the Court of Appeal of Sierra Leone; Ms. Miatta Maria Samba – High Court Judge; Ms. Fatmata Bintu Alhadi – High Court Judge; and Mr. Jacob Elvis Quee – Member, Local Government Service Commission.
Prior to the approval of the nominees, Hon. Komba Koedoyoma said among other things that he felt elated especially when young qualified people were nominated by President Ernest Bai Koroma to serve in high offices of State. Unlike now, he said old people were appointed to the Bench.
Speaking on the judges, he said they should do as promised because justice delayedis justice denied; whilst wishing former MPs success in their pursuits.
Hon. Claude D.M. Kamanda observed that in the past the old and retirees were recalled to serve in high offices thus denying the young and energetic the opportunity to serve their country. He urged that more opportunities should be given to young people to serve, whilst admonishing them to go and make a difference by serving diligently.
Hon. Kamanda informed the House that as Chairman of the Committee on Transparency and Accountability (TAC), he had written letters to all MDAs to retire staff who are due retirement, failing which TAC will order their retirement.
He spoke on the need to revive SALPOST and strengthen local councils which are affected by quarterly transfers, and “square pegs in round holes”.
Hon. Mohamed Tholley praised President Koroma for nominating young and charming people to serve in high offices. He said that “politicians are interfering with the work of the judiciary”, and reminded the House of the words of President Koroma that “orders from above” should not be used to influence the dispensation of justice. He noted that NIC, SALPOST and local councils have enormous challenges that should be met for effective and efficient service delivery.
Minority Leader, Hon. Dr. Bernadette Lahai, opined that the former MPs have worked very hard to the extent of being nominated by President Koroma to serve in other offices. She thanked President Koroma for nominating two eminent women who have carried themselves professionally in the Bench.
She emphasized the need for education, noting that no nation will progress leaving 50% of its women uneducated. She encouraged MDAs to share their successes and failures with Parliament, and spoke on the need for reviewing the Local Government Act, 2004, which has taken 10 years since enactment, to enhance development.
Majority Leader, Hon. Ibrahim Bundu, praised the Legal Aid Board for updating Parliament without being summoned to do so. He said “the three judges appear youthful, but they are not youths”, and that they would be retired very soon. He also said that “old wine tastes good” whilst expressing his opinion that the retirement age of judges and doctors pegged at 65 be extended to serve the country because of inadequate human resources.
“The 5-year term limit for MPs is small,” he said, adding that it should be extended to seven years to better serve the country. This, he said, would prevent MPs from being sent out of Parliament “prematurely”.
He also spoke on the need to revive SALPOST to create more jobs, whilst saying that the country is losing a lot of money to DHL and other foreign companies via postal services.
Department of Public Relations
Parliament of Sierra Leone