October 2, 2022

By Ragan M. Conteh

Honourable Abdul Karim kamara popularly known as AKK who is bitterly opposed to the appointment of Mohamed Konneh as head of National Electoral Commission (NEC) has said in parliament that 2023 will be a different year in Sierra Leone.

Hon AKK who represents constituency O59 in Masogbala and Munuthala in Kambia district made the statement during the debate for parliamentary endorsement of Mohamed Konneh as head of NEC.

“The future of Sierra Leone in the next elections will be one of looming violence, and Political analysts who claim that 2023 elections will be violent are right,” Hon AKK submitted.

“It is the peace of our nation and solidarity we enjoy, and it is that bad experience of Constituency 110 elections that is holding us today” he said.

Hon AKK told parliament that the Chief Electoral Commissioner appointed today is putting his name in the book of history, his actions or his inactions would always be what he would be remembered for.

The MP also submitted that the controversy around the electoral commissioner by the time he listened to the submissions of his colleagues MP’s from Kailahun district realised that the game was over.

He told the speaker that whatever precedent set today will definitely be a precedent for tomorrow.

Hon. AKK also told the house that whenever there is a constitutional matter against precedent; one ought to know that the constitution is paramount.

He said MP’s of the ruling Sierra Leone People’s Party  are telling us that all what qualifies them as MP’s is still law and that for  the Chief Electoral Commissioner they are telling us that the one- year resignation is not part of it.

“The appointment of the Chief Electoral Commissioner is controversial all by itself,” Hon. AKK said.

The MP argued that all what warrant him as Members of Parliament is that the same law debars NEC boss, Mr. Mohamed Konneh from becoming a Chief Electoral Commissioner.

The lawyer, HM Gevao, the MP argued, who justified the appointment was the same lawyer who was in court when 11 APC MP’s were removed.

“Where is the integrity and sincerity for us as MP’s today? What we do today will not debar any President from removing a minister to become Chief Electoral Commissioner based on the precedent we are setting today” he stressed.

The MP said, the opposition had no problem with the integrity of Mohamed Konneh, but the house must keep to the laws of the land.

Hon. AKK informed the speaker that there were certain things MP’s did in Parliament which, he said would not only hunt the Speaker but also would dent his reputation.

He accuses those who posted on the social media in favour of the NEC boss even before the appointment was announced are not just SLPP, but they are thick and thin in the Paopa SLPP ideology.

Hon. AKK however restored his co-parliamentarians’ zeal that  Chief Electoral Commissioners are not people political parties should fear in this country as they have seen past regimes appointed NEC Chairmen and came out the other way.