February 3, 2015 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma
Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) lawmaker representing Constituency 87 in the Bonthe District on Friday (30th January), during his contribution to the debate on the Presidential Address that was laid in Parliament on 5th December 2014, trilled the entire House with his oratory and mastery of the fundamental issues bedevilling the country.
Known for his smart and very astute character, Hon. Segepoh Solomon Thomas – who has also established himself as one of the most outstanding lawyers in Sierra Leone – did not mince his words when he boldly stated that what Sierra Leone lacks in its body polity is “truth”. According to the MP, “nobody wants to say the truth anymore, even when things are going really bad”.
“Everybody knows the reason why nobody wants to say the truth because saying it will cost those saying it their jobs or positions,” spluttered the MP cum lawyer, who went further to urge the ruling party MPs in the House to allow the main opposition MPs to speak out the truth. “SLPP MPs do not only have the audacity to tell the truth about what is happening in the country regarding the ills in today’s governance, but that they are nobody’s appendage.”
Among other salient issues raised in the debate, Hon. Thomas said the country no longer needs budgetary allocation for road rehabilitation but instead for road construction. This he considered as very plausible especially as the amount of money being spent on road rehabilitation has been very huge without much impact seen.
He said the construction of court buildings and the recruitment of judges and magistrates do not necessarily mean there is proper justice delivery in place, as there has been too much interference in the justice delivery system today than at any other time in the country’s governance history.
He therefore urged the ruling APC government to uphold the independence of the judiciary, as well as providing adequate incentives for judges and magistrates.
Speaking on the radio and TV teaching program, Hon. Thomas observed that despite some ruling party diehards and other government functionaries endorsing the education program as appropriate, the President had indicated in his speech that the materials needed to enable the program reach the targeted groups in the rural areas are still lacking.
“For the government to expend between Le600,000,000 (six hundred million Leones) to Le1,000,000,000 (one billion Leones) monthly on such a program is a complete waste of resources, especially when the program cannot reach even 20% of the targeted group,” noted the mercurial MP.
He added: “SLPP MPs will be at the Government Wharf waiting to see the two new ferries the President has promised to buy for the country. We think Sierra Leone can no longer afford to spend huge resources on the repair of very old ferries.”