The Parliament of Sierra Leone on Tuesday 08th May 2018 debated and approved the Second Report of its Committee on Appointments and the Public Service, in the Fifth Parliament of the Second Republic, chaired by the Leader of Government Business, Hon. Mohamed Sidi Tunis.
The presidential nominees are to serve in various high offices of State, with the view of supporting President Bio to succeed in his policies and programmes under the “New Direction”.
The following presidential nominees have been approved by the House:
1. Mrs. Memunatu Baby Pratt-Minister of Tourism and Cultural Affairs
2. Mr. Joseph J. Ndanema-Minister of Agriculture and Forestry
3. Mrs. Nabeela F. Tunis (nee Koroma)-Minister of Planning and Economic Development
4. Mr. Anthony Y. Brewah-Minister of Local Government and Rural Development
5. Mr. Raymond Ernest Denison de’ Souza George-Minister of Works and Public Assets
6. Dr. Morie Komba Manyeh-Minister of Mines and Mineral Resources
7. Mr. Andrew Ansu Fatoma-Resident Minister-East
8. Mr. Mohamed Elogima Kendekpa Alie-Resident Minister-South
9. Mr. Mohamed Bangura-Minister of Youth Affairs, and
10. Mr. Abu Abu Abdulai Koroma – Resident Minister-North
Seconding the motion, Hon. Dickson Rogers, who doubles as Chief Whip of Parliament commended President Bio for selecting “a galaxy of qualified Sierra Leoneans” to serve the country in various spheres. He also spoke on the need for improving domestic tourism and to refining our youth to be fit for purpose.
In his contribution, the Deputy Speaker of the House, Hon. Sengepoh Solomon Thomas described the nominees as “suitably qualified Sierra Leoneans who have been called to serve”, whilst speaking on the need to do something different, saying that governance is not a “fancy”, but rather a serious business based on deliverables.
On the other hand, Hon. Rebecca Yei Kamara of Coalition for Change (C4C) spoke on the need for transparency and accountability in the governance and management of our minerals, with the aim of benefiting the mining affected communities, citing laws and regulations as in Botswana.
Hon. Saa Emmerson Lamina, Leader of Coalition for Change (C4C) concurred on the need for strengthening the governance of our minerals, cognizant of reviewing the Local Government Act of 2004, and the Mines and Minerals Act to sanitize some of the challenges in these sectors.
Hon. PC Bai Kurr Kanagbaro Sanka III also said that exploration companies are mining without the appropriate licenses, whilst speaking on the need for food security, and to avoid other forms of environmental degradation such as erosion and deforestation.
Independent Member of Parliament, Hon. Shiaka M. Sama from Pujehun District has called on the Government to institute an independent investigation as 90% of their farmlands in Sahn Malen is owned by a foreign company, thereby depriving them of their livelihood, whilst referring to Mrs. Tunis and Lawyer Brewah as part of those human rights defenders, who raised the much needed funds to get him out of “prisons”.
Hon. Bashiru Silike and Hon. Veronica K. Sesay respectively acclaimed President Bio for selecting qualified Sierra Leoneans, whilst speaking on the need for performance and improvement in the respective sectors, cognizant of the entertainment industry.
Deputy Leader of the Opposition in Parliament, Hon. Ibrahim Ben Kargbo said that the APC could not lend credence and do justice to the debate because they did not take part in the screening processes, but recognized the nominees as “patriotic Sierra Leoneans”.
In concluding the debate, the Leader of Government Business, Hon. Mohamed Sidi Tunis promised that the APC will soon start active deliberations in both plenary and committee sittings, whilst appealing to nominees to work with their professionals, who are equally Sierra Leoneans, and not to “sack people” using partisan lenses.
Department of Public Relations
Parliament of Sierra Leone
OAU Drive, Tower Hill
#SierraLeone’s new president completes his list of cabinet nominees. Julius Maada Bio has created a new super-ministry headed by a Chief Minister, Prof David Francis. It is not immediately clear what that means or whether it replaces the administrative post of State House Chief of Staff. Prof Francis taught the president at Bradford University.
Only four of the 27 full cabinet positions have gone to women. They include Nabeela Tunis, wife of the Parliamentary Leader of the governing SLPP party.
The head of the 50/50 gender parity group has expressed disappointment. “While we congratulate the women, we are a little bit disappointed that only four of the 27 full cabinet positions went to women”, said Dr Fatu Taqi. She urged the president to put on “the gender lens” in appointing people to ambassadorial and Parastatal positions.
Even though the nominees are predominantly from the southeastern stronghold of the president’s party, there are northerners in senior positions such as education, health, trade and youth affairs.
There is also an attempt to widen the overall list to include people from other political parties. The presidential running-mate of the ADP party, Haja Isata Abdulai-Kamara has been appointed as non-cabinet minister (Resident Minister, Northwest). ADP did not endorse Bio in the runoff election.
Presidential candidate Charles Margai is Attorney General – his PMDC party did endorse Bio.
Peter Bayuku Konteh of the NGC party and a former APC cabinet minister is the new Minister of Trade-designate. His NGC party did not endorse Bio.
There is none from the main opposition APC party.
It’s not clear whether these cross-party appointments were made with the blessing of the parties the three belong to.
Strategically there are two appointees from the swing Kono District – Higher Education and Mines.
Full list of cabinet and non-cabinet ministers:
Chief Minister – Professor David Francis
Finance Minister – Jacob Saffa
Attorney General and Minister of Justice – Charles Margai – Attorney General
Minister of Primary and Secondary Education – Alpha Timbo