After, they had subscribed and signed the oath of office for Members of Parliament, the Clerk handed them two envelopes containing the 1991 Constitution of Sierra Leone, and the Standing Orders of Parliament, saying that they are the “tools with which they work and will also enhance their efficiency in Parliament regarding debates and any other duties as may be assigned to them”, followed by a rapturous applause by the crowd of supporters. They were later conducted to their respective seats by the Majority and the Minority Whips in Parliament.
You may recall that the two new MPs for both Constituencies were elected in the recent bye-elections conducted by the National Electoral Commission, after the death of Hon. Patrick Foyah, and the appointment of Hon. Isata Kabia, who is the current Minister of State II in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Therefore, Parliament is now wholly constituted, after the vacancies had been filled with APC having 70, SLPP-42, and 12-Paramount Chiefs making the total to 124.
In another development, the Parliament of Sierra Leone has on the 19th July, 2016 ratified the 11th Report of the Committee on Appointments and the Public Service by approving Presidential nominees, including Mrs. Bernadette Cole, and three others to serve in high offices of State.
The following nominees were approved by Parliament through a collection of voices:
I. Mrs. Bernadette Cole-Member, Teaching Service Commission
II. Colonel (Rtd.) Alie Brima Yamba Kamara-Member, Environmental Protection Agency
III. Mrs. Fatmata Sorie-Member, Teaching Service Commission and
IV. Mr. Alfred Jumah Osman Fornah-Member, Income Tax Board of Appellate Commissioners
Prior to ratification, MPs on both sides of the aisle eulogized Mrs. Cole for her exemplary service to the nation, noting honesty and dedication to duty, particularly in the fields of education and journalism. They also called on the nominees to succeed in their new appointments, whilst enumerating some of the challenges regarding strong leadership to combat environmental degradation, fake teaching certificates, improving the conditions of service for teachers, the need to provide resources to the Teaching Service Commission to enable her to do her work etc.
These nominees, having been approved by Parliament will enter their official duties after President Koroma would have administered oath to them.