Sierra Leone Telegraph: 12 July 2021:
Last Friday, members of Sierra Leone’s parliament representing most of the major political parties called for their colleague MP Emmanuel Saidu Conteh to be granted bail by police, following his arrest on alleged shipping of arms and ammunition into the country, a claim he has strongly denied.
Using Standing Order 23 of parliamentary rules of procedure, the Leader of the Opposition, Chernor Ramadan Maju Bah pleaded with the Presiding Speaker of Parliament, Sengepoh Solomon Thomas to intervene for the dignity of Parliament, “without prejudice or interference to the process for bail to be granted to Hon. Emmanuel Saidu Conteh, pending investigation by CID on an alleged matter involving arms and ammunition, for which he has been detained seven days ago”.
Leader of NGC, Hon. Dr. Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella shared similar sentiment in light of solidarity and after visiting Emmanuel Saidu Conteh at the CID as they have done so before for another MP.
Recalling his recent contributions in Parliament, the Leader of Government Business concurred and appealed that “Hon. Emmanuel Saidu Conteh be granted bail as the investigation continues”.
In another development in parliament last week Thursday, MPs debated and unanimously passed into law a Bill entitled: “The Universities Act, 2021”, with some amendments aimed at repealing and replacing the University of Sierra Leone Act, 2005 (Act No.1 of 2005).
The Bill provides for the continuation of the University of Sierra Leone and the establishment of Milton Margai University of Education and Technology, the Ernest Bai Koroma University of Science and Technology, the Technical University of Sierra Leone and the University of Science and Technology, to provide for the appointment of Chancellors of Universities by the President, to provide for the establishment of other public universities and private universities, and to provide for other related matters.
Following its passage into law, the Leader of Government Business, Hon. Mathew Sahr Nyuma thanked President Bio, the Minister of Technical and Higher Education, Prof. Alpha Tejan Wurie, Hon. Members of Parliament, Academics including Prof. Lahai and Dr. Philip Kanu and the press for staying the course, culminating to the passage into law the Universities Act of 2021 with the aim of creating and expanding university education to improve on human capital development in Sierra Leone.
Speaking on the sacrifices of MPs in spite of public criticisms, he said they would continue to serve the country with “God and their conscience”, and called on students who filled the lower and upper galleries to follow the deliberations before passage into law “to study very hard to earn their academic qualifications”.
Joining the Leader of Government Business in thanking others, the Leader of the Opposition, Hon. Chernor Ramadan Maju Bah (Photo) spoke about the establishment of the Ernest Bai Koroma University of Science and Technology, and the need for togetherness to pass good laws for the development of the country.
He also said that as opposition, they would always argue, and disagree to agree for the development of the country. He said the universities should be equipped for practical courses in order to play a pivotal role in manufacturing and production than “to only read and write”.
Minister of Technical and Higher Education, Prof. Alpha Tejan Wurie thanked President Bio and Parliament for expanding on technical, scientific and technological education in the country with a view to improving on human capital development in Sierra Leone.