In a recent press release, the Speaker of the House of Parliament for the Republic of Sierra Leone, Hon. Chernor Abass Bundu, has extended congratulations to Hon. Mohamed Bangura of the APC for taking his seat in parliament and representing his constituents.

However, the Speaker also used the opportunity to appeal to the remaining 53 members of parliament from the All Peoples’ Congress Party (APC) to follow Hon. Mohamed Bangura’s example and promptly take their seats. He reminded them of the constitutional provisions and standing orders that pertain to parliamentary attendance and the consequences for prolonged absence without a valid reason.

Quoting from the Constitution of Sierra Leone (Act No. 6 of 1991), the Speaker highlighted paragraph (e) of subsection (1) of Section 77, which states that a Member of Parliament shall vacate their seat if they are absent from parliamentary sittings for a period and under circumstances specified in the rules of procedure of Parliament.

The Standing Order S.O. 77 (2)(a) further elaborates that any member who is absent from parliamentary sittings for an aggregate period of 30 days during a session without a valid cause shall also vacate their seat.

The Speaker emphasized the importance of parliamentary participation and the duty of elected representatives to uphold democratic processes.

He called upon prominent members of the APC Party, who have served the country with distinction, to intervene in the present stalemate within the party.

He warned against the dangers of allowing the party to be controlled by a small group of self-interested politicians and urged them to act in the best interest of the nation.

The Speaker made it clear that walk-outs and boycotts are no longer effective political tools in the 21st century of participatory democracy.

He cautioned against seeking external interference in the country’s governance, asserting that decisions regarding Sierra Leone’s future should be made by its citizens in accordance with their sovereign laws.

In conclusion, the Speaker appealed to the APC Members of Parliament to heed his message and take their seats in the House, fulfilling their mandate and responsibilities to the people who elected them. Failure to do so, in line with the constitutional provisions, could result in the vacancy of their parliamentary seats.