He said MPs should be seen championing the fight against the ugly menace with accountability and honesty.
Hon. Tawa was speaking during a debate on the amended Anti Corruption Act in the house of parliament.
The Bill which is now coming before the House for the second time after controversies surrounding too much power given to the Commissioner than the Commission is described by the presiding Speaker of parliament Hon. Sengepoh Thomas as one that has disgraced the house of parliament and therefore needs to be amended and passed as soon as possible.
While members of parliament were lending their voices to the debate, Hon. Tawa emphasized the need for parliament to be an example in leading the fight against corruption stating that Sierra Leoneans were in high anticipation of difference being a parliament with the highest number of new breeds of MPs but that expectation is not being lived up to.
He pointed out to the issue of parliament having at least a hundred and twenty sittings per session as enshrined in section 86 sub sections 4 of the 1991 constitution but the house have only had 32 sittings, which was debunked by the leader of government business stating that committees sittings are all part of that.
He went on to say the fight against corruption should not be done by cherry picking revealing the fact that parliament does not pay due diligence to its calendar which the clerk of the business committee should be stating the business of the house for sittings but that he says has been abandoned by the clerk turning parliament to the puppet of the executive arm of government stating that parliament is only summoned when the executive have papers to table which to him is disrespect to parliament especially when the executive refuses to appear when parliament summons them, adding that the report of the public accounts committee on the auditor’s general report that has issues that should have been treated using the Act to hold people accountable of different offenses but that is has not been effective. Tawa said that parliament has not helped the system as the system allows whatever that comes to the house to be passed without proper scrutiny. He also toed the line of Hon. Kandeh Yumkella by committing the bill to committee stage for proper scrutiny emphasizing the need for members to unite in the fight against corruption without fear or favor. He highlighted that the fight against corruption has not been successful because of familiarity and special interest. He encouraged members of parliament to avoid lip service, adding that parliament should ensure transparency and accountability by fighting decently and honestly, pointing out how parliament spends 75% of the parliamentary budget on air ticket and 55% on perdiem, report pointing out parliament owes over one hundred billions Leones in six months.
Hon. Tawa ended up by calling on Mps to come out of the assimilation attitude that overlooks things of national concern for personal gains especially in accessing ministries, department and agencies without compromise, adding that parliament should serve as gatekeepers of the revenue of the country. Other members also raised concerns of the over empowerment of the commissioner and pleaded for proper scrutiny to be done before it is passed. The bill has now been committed to the legislative and transparency committees for due diligence.
In another news, parliament also swore in new members of parliament and approved three presidential nominees