AN OPEN LETTER TO THE SPEAKER OF PARLIAMENT HON ABASS BUNDU
Request for withdrawal of defamatory statement made by Honourable Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella in Parliament on 25th April, 2018
Dear Honourable Speaker;
I write to draw your attention to the statement made by Honourable Kandeh Yumkella on the 25th of April in the well of Parliament after the Clark of Parliament rejected him on two occasions for not knowing the parliamentary standing order he wished to express himself on.
In his statement, Honourable Kandeh referred to our country’s democracy as a Junta Democracy which is against the parliamentary ethics and unacceptable in modern society like ours.
Mr. Honourable speaker, I considered this statement from your Honourable as defamatory, and if so, I may want to draw your attention to section 91 subsection 2 of our constitution which reads: whenever in the opinion of the person presiding in Parliament a statement made by a member is prima facie defamatory of any person, the person presiding shall request the matter for inquiry to the committee of privileges which shall report its findings to Parliament not later than thirty days of the matter being so refereed.
Subsection (3) where the committee of privileges report to Parliament that the statement made by the member of Parliament is defamatory, the member who made the statement shall, within seven days of that report render an apology at the bar of Parliament.
Subsection (4) where the member refuses to render an apology pursuant to the provisions of section (3), the speaker shall suspend the member for the duration of the session of Parliament in which the defamatory statement was made. And a member so suspended shall lose his parliamentary privileges, immunities and remuneration which shall be returned to him if at an anytime before the end of the session he render the apology as required under the provisions of section (3)
In line with this, I write to crave on your indulgence as the speaker of our most Honourable Parliament ever to asked Honourable Kandeh Yumkella to apologize to the people of this country whose Democracy was refereed to by him as a Junta democracy as provided in our constitution.
Thanks in advance.
May God bless sierra Leone.