The leadership of the main opposition All People’s Congress Party seems embroiled in controversy over the announcement of the return of the expelled Former Vice President, Sam- Sumana with some saying it’s ” null and Void”
A statement dated 4 August 2022 and issued on behalf of the party’s 21-member Interim Transition Governance Committee (ITGC) says Sam-Sumana has been brought back to the fold of the party in the interest of unity
Sam-Sumana was expelled in 2015 in the lead-up to his controversial dismissal as vice president of the country by the then president, Ernest Bai Koroma. He had been accused of anti-party activities, among other things. A decision that was questioned by many at the time.
The statement signed by the ITGC Chairman, Alfred Peter Conteh, reads in part thus: “We have on this day agreed in the interest of cohesiveness and unity of all members of the party to extend an unconditional reinstatement” to the former vice president and some unnamed party members who were also expelled. It says the decision followed several discussions in ITGC meetings.
But the Secretary General of that leadership committee, Abdul Kargbo, MP, has rejected it, saying it was a unilateral decision by the interim chairman alone.
Speaking to Politico, he said, “it was not consensual. Committee met, committee members, discussed it. [but] even some members of his nine men the appointed to the ITGC) are shocked to see such a release on social media”.
Kargbo said such a decision must be taken by the majority members of the leadership committee “so we to are all shocked and surprised to see him solitarily do what he did.
He said the decision was,
therefore null and void”,
But the committee chairman, Alfred Peter Conteh has defended the decision and the statement he issued.
Speaking to Politico, he said it was arrived at “in consultation with members of the ITGC. There is no way in any ruling where it says everybody has to be there [in a meeting). So at the time when it was done, we had a quorum. It was tabled and a decision was taken.
Citing the APC constitution, Conteh said a quorum for their meetings was one-third of committee members “and at the time when we took that particular decision we had more than a quorum ”
Asked when the meeting took place , he said there was a meeting on 20th July and two other meetings subsequent to that
But the Political Party Registration Commission, which regulates parties in the country, has disagreed with this. In an advisory a statement to the ITGC. it says it to held a meeting with all members of the committee and advised that a quorum could not be determined the under the rules of the APC party, but rather based on the court’s judgment which created the interim leadership Committee