By Jane B. Mansaray.
Members of the Committee on Appointments and Public Service in Parliament yesterday presented another set of Presidential nominees to the House of Parliament for approval after going through screening and interviews by the committee.
The ten presidential nominees including Mrs. Memunatu Pratt , proposed Minister of Tourism and Culture, Joseph Dandema, proposed Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Mrs. Nabilla F. Tunis ,Proposed Minister of Economic Development and Planning, Lawyer Anthony Y. Berewa, Proposed Minister of Local Government, Rev. Raymond de Souza George, aka Papa Ray, Proposed Minister of Works and Public Asset, Dr. Morie Manyeh, Proposed Minister of Mines and Mineral Resources, Mr. Mohamed Alie, proposed Resident Minister South, Mr. Mohamed Bangura, Proposed Minister of Youth and Mr. Abu Abu Abdulai Koroma, proposed Resident Minister North were presented to the House of Parliament by the Leader of Government Business, Honorable Sidie M. Tunis. All the nominees were approved by the House following a motion moved by Hon. Tunis and seconded by Honorable Dickson Rogers.
In his remarks after the approval of the Miniters, Honorable Tunis commended President Bio for meeting his constitutional obligation in appointing credible and qualified citizens to serve as Ministers in the various Ministries.
He declared that all the ten nominees were interviewed and their Curriculum Vitae prove them to be over qualified to serve in the various capacities entrusted to them by the President.
Responding to the approval of the proposed Ministers, Honorable S.S. Thomas vowed for all the nominees that President Bio did not make any mistake in his appointment and promised that he and his colleagues will serve the people of Sierra Leone in the best interest of the His Excellency`s New Direction Manifesto, stressing, `a new dawn has entered into the political landscape of Sierra Leone’.
He maintained that Sierra Leone as a nation did not have problem with qualified people, but the problem had been that those in governance had fallen below the expectation of the people who elected them.
He encouraged the new appointees to make a difference as this is not business as usual and that Parliament would be inviting them from time to time to answer to critical questions arising from their stewardship.
Honorable Thomas reiterated that issues of governance are not matters of fancy and that their appointments should not be taken as compensation, but to serve in the best interest of Mama Salone so that at the end of their term of office, the nation will award and remember them for their diligent service to nation building.
He confirmed that several people of substance have occupied those positions before, but the nation had not benefited any good.
Several speakers including a Paramount Chief, an Independent Candidate, Shiaka Musa Sama, Members of the Coalition for Change (C4C) and the ruling Sierra Leone Peoples Party (SLPP) commended the nominees and encouraged them to work not only in the interest of the ruling party, but for all Sierra Leoneans and requested them to operate not through `orders from above’ as it used to be in the past, but according to what is good for the people and the law.
The opposition (APC) Party Deputy Leader of Parliament, Honorable Ibrahim Ben Kargbo said their members will not make statements on any of the nominees because they did not take part in the screening process.
He said their position is not in any way to undermine the system, but assured all of their full commitment in all other business of the House.
The Speaker of Parliiament, Dr. Abass Bundu congratulated and commended the newly approved Ministers and wished them well in their new assignments.