After 23rd October… Commission Of Inquiry Starts


Speaker of Parliament, Hon. Dr. Abass Chernor Bundu was bemused last week when no Member of Parliament from any of the four political parties in the House called for a motion to debate the three constitutional instruments of the proposed Commission of Inquiry.

It could be recalled that before Parliament called a short recess in September, the Deputy Attorney General and Minister of Justice laid before the House two instruments asking for MPs to approve for the setting up of a Commission of Inquiry to look investigate 52 former government officials for alleged evidence of grand corruption, including the former President, former APC presidential candidate, former Ministers and their Deputies and heads of MDAs spanning from November, 2007 to April, 2018. The third instrument was laid before Parliament by the Deputy Attorney General and Minister of Justice when the House resumed on 2ns October.

Lawmakers representing the main opposition All People’ Congress (APC) vehemently argued in the well of Parliament that the three constitutional instruments should not be passed into law without debate as it had to do with their party members and that the inquiry carried national importance.

When Parliament returned from recess, the Speaker told the House and the nation that he was well disposed to debate of the instruments after consultations and reference to decisions by courts of law on the matter. He set 13th October for the debate, cautioning that any MP that raised the motion must do so using the correct Standing Order.

With no MP rising up to raise the motion when he adjourned the sitting last Thursday, the Speaker stated that counting of the 21 days within which the instruments would mature and without debate, it would automatically become law starting from 2nd to 23rd October, 2018. Thereafter, the government has the power to start the Commission of Inquiry as recommended by the Governance Transition Team (GTT) Report and endorsed by the Cabinet of President Rtd. Brig. Julius Maada Bio.