Acting Minority Leader in parliament of the main opposition Sierra Leone Peopleís Party (SLPP) has said in Freetown that "it is now an open secret that the executive arm of the ruling All Peopleís Congress (APC) seems to have influence over the Judiciary and Parliament".
Hon. Emmanuel Tommy was speaking¬†on Friday 4th September 2009 at the SLPPí s party headquarters in Freetown, when he informed members of the SLPP that the opposition MPs were faced with what he described as unfair treatment meted on them by the Speaker of Parliament. He said the Speaker of the House of Parliament has on several instances overruled points forwarded by the opposition during debates.
He further assured that the opposition MPs have come out from their slumber, when he emphatically stated that they would from henceforth critically debate on all matters taken to parliament.
Earlier, the Chairman of the party, Mr. John Oponjo Benjamin admonished the MPs to stay united and focused in order for them to achieve a common goal.
He described the task ahead of the party as simple but difficult to achieve. "The task is simple because the APC is already campaigning for the opposition as the hardship continues to bite the citizens," he confidently asserted, adding: "But your responsibility in Parliament is to vigorously challenge any proposal that is not in the interest of the nation".
Mr. Benjamin pointed out that the electorates would hold the MPs responsible for allowing bills to go through parliament without making critical analysis.
The APC, he furthered, was organizing itself to intimidate members and supporters of the opposition, and called on all and sundry to stay united and resist any attempt of such nature.
He exposed that the APC government has failed the people of this country in several fronts including the economy, health, education and above all the Ďnorthernisationí agenda, adding that this does not augur well in a democracy.
He added that marginalization, unemployment, high cost of living and several other unpleasant developments have served few among the numerous negative incidences the APC has recorded.
Mr. Benjamin emphasized the need for parliamentarians to stay in touch with their constituents as the latter go through these difficult times. Meanwhile, all parliamentarians present at the meeting who made statements vowed to remain united, whilst assuring that they would redouble their efforts to fearlessly analyze and criticize motions that are not in the interest of the citizens, when parliament resumes operation.