The Chairman of the All Peoples Congress (APC) Constitutional Review Committee, Lawyer Ibrahim Sorie on Sunday 19th September 2021, assured all that with the adoption of the draft Constitution, there will be no more selection within the Party.
Awoko reports that He made this disclosure in an interview at around 11pm after officially announcing the final votes cast for the adoption of the draft APC Constitution at the just concluded three days Emergency Delegates Convention.
Ibrahim Sorie explained they were given the mandate in 2018 to review the 1995 APC Constitution within three months, but some very serious issues came up that led to the delay and inclusion of the membership, noting that adopting the draft Constitution is a winning and a democratic one that can stand the test of time.
“It will transform the APC politics together with the country’s politics. We have separated the role of the Chairman and Leader. The Leader will now automatically become the flag bearer while the Chairman handles the activities of the party. There will be no more selection within the Party. We are now focused on election throughout,” he maintained, disclosing that they have made the party so attractive by empowering women.
He disclosed that lack of funding is one of the major challenges facing their Committee while moving around the country to get the views of the people together with several court cases and other internal party issues, which are all things of the past now.
Lawyer Joseph F Kamara expressed satisfaction with the process and the draft constitution, which according to him has given life to the APC party by capturing all the necessary ingredients. He disclosed that it is a common thing for all of them to take responsibility of what had happened within their party. Something which he said their Party’s Chairman and Leader had already done. He opined that he did not think former President Ernest Koroma was trying to belittle or embarrass anyone with his statement while referring to the various faction representatives as those responsible for the confusion in their party. He maintained that Ernest Koroma was just trying to express his emotions on the actions of some members, calling on everyone to come on board and work towards winning the 2023 elections, which is their ultimate goal.
Commenting on the changes that were effected in the draft Constitution, the Acting Publicity Secretary of APC, Sidi Yayah Tunis, explained that they thought it fit to make some additions to their Party’s structure and organ by incorporating certain units that were considered as a region including the Diaspora and the Western Area was split into three instead of two based on their own arrangement.
He disclosed that they further added some units within the Party’s Secretariat including the Media, ICT, Planning Monitoring and Research units, this according to him is one major change that was effected, disclosing that as a way of broadening their youth wing that was known as the National Youth League was transformed into the ‘Young People’s Congress’ and they have the Women’s Congress.
“The major clause that people were crying for ‘the Selection Clause’ has been removed from our Constitution. The Delegates have agreed that there should be election for every position within the party structures,” he stated, adding that APC has included the 30 percent quota for women into its Constitution to ensure when they are in governance 30 percent of appointments should be given to women in various areas.
The Acting National Publicity Secretary furthered that they have also given delegates status to persons with disabilities to be represented in the National Advisory Council (NAC) which is the second highest decision making body within the APC, which according to him gives more recognition to this set of people in society.
On the issue of flag bearer, Sidi Tunis maintained that they have made it very clear that if the National Delegates expel someone it is the National Delegates Conference only that should re-instate that person again into the party. If need be he said and if someone leaves the Party whether by resignation or expulsion when that person is coming back, he is coming as a ‘new member’ and his membership will start afresh.
“Also for someone to qualify for positions within the Party including Flag bearer, there are laid down time lines that have been set. For Presidential candidates the person should have been in the party for at least five years and of good standing uninterruptedly without any break,” he assured.