14th December 2018
Yumkella's Viewpoints on the Pending GTT Commission of Inquiry under the SLPP Govt!
By Anthony Kamara, Jnr (06/09/18)
"To be credible, the Commission of Inquiry must include Permanent Secretaries and Vote Controllers," says Dr. Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella.
The National Grand Coalition NGC leader and MP for Kambia writes: "It is obvious that today our country is going through a moral crisis and it requires, for at least the next few months until the end of the year, that each of us should let go off our party colours and put ‘Salon Fos'. (Photo: Yumkella posed with wife Philomena in parliament).
"We must examine our own conscience and our own core values to speak truth to power and to defend the voiceless. We must help win the war on corruption including holding the current government accountable.
"At the same time, to be credible, the Commissions of Enquiry must include the Permanent Secretaries and Vote Controllers for they are at the heart of financial transactions in all government institutions and parastatals. A minister or CEO of a parastatal cannot withdraw money or issue a contract without the signature or concurrence of a permanent secretary or a vote controller.
"In fact, the Permanent Secretaries and Vote Controllers rotate from ministry to ministry with impunity leaving the ministers to take the ‘bum rap’ for any impropriety. They enjoy impunity by invoking their favourite mantra 'I am directed' or 'I was directed'. To be transformative, the inquiries must also be thorough and fair to allow the innocent to go free and the guilty to face the full penalty of the law.
"To prevent abuse of human rights and freedoms, the tenure of the Commissions cannot be open-ended. They must be time bound and able to complete their work within one year to ensure that the current Executive Branch does not use it to go after those who will challenge their future excesses. Ultimately, the work of the proposed Commissions of Inquiry will give us an insight into whether the New Direction is a direction for change and progress. The Chief Minister bears the biggest responsibility for ensuring that the Commissions are not a charade and that justice is delivered quickly, for justice delayed is justice denied.
"As true citizens, we should all support the war on corruption and make sure it succeeds. This requires us to examine our own values and our conscience. As Professor Lumumba would say, some people want to fight corruption provided it is not against their tribesmen/tribeswomen or provided it does not disrupt their own personal access to the loot. Each of us has a role in the fight for the soul of our country. It is basically a fight about our belief in and consciousnesses about values, morality and justice. So, are you ready for change? Start with your own conscience.
Note: Dr. Kandeh Yumkella is Member of Parliament representing Constituency 062 - Samu Chiefdom, Kambia District. He is currently in the USA and en route to Philadelphia- 'the City of Brotherly Love' to meet and thank his numerous fans and supporters following the 2018 elections. Dr. Yumkella will hold a town hall meeting to answer questions from Sierra Leoneans.
The remarks above are extracted from his remarks so far in the United States of America at events he has held with Sierra Leoneans.
Courtesy: By Anthony Abdul Karim Kamara, Jnr.