Sierra Leone’s parliament revokes state of emergency on rape

Sierra Leone Telegraph: 20 June 2019:

Yesterday, Sierra Leone’s parliamentarians decided to revoke a controversial State of Emergency Decree that was promulgated  by President Bio on 19th February 2019, which was subsequently ratified by Parliament on Friday 22nd February 2019.

Since the passing of the State of Emergency Law in February, there has been widespread confusion as to how this presidential Decree could be enforced.

Civil society groups have strongly called for an overhaul and strengthening of existing laws so as to give tougher and wider powers to police and welfare organisations to tackle the alarming rise in sexual offences in the country.

Revoking the State of Emergency on Rape Decree in parliament yesterday, the Leader of Government Business – Sidie M. Tunis MP, moved a motion in pursuant to Section 29 (13) of the 1991 Constitution, that: “Parliament revokes the declaration of the State of Public Emergency Regarding Rape and Sexual Violence”.

This revocation now places in front of MPs for debate, a new Bill entitled “The Sexual Offences Amendment Act 2019” for consideration.

In another development, the Parliament of Sierra Leone yesterday also debated and approved the appointment of Dr. Francis Kai-Kai to serve as the country’s new Minister of Planning and Economic Development.

Dr kai-Kai will take over responsibility for assisting President Bio in the implementation of policies and programmes contained in the government’s “New Direction” agenda.

Dr. Kai-Kai (Photo), previously served as Sierra Leone’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York.

Seconding the motion to approve Dr Kai-Kai, Veronica Kadie Sesay MP, said she has no scintilla of doubt that Dr Kai-Kai will do well for the country and that he will be working on a solid foundation laid by the former Minister of Planning and Economic Development, Nabeela Tunis. She encouraged Kai-Kai to work in the interest of women, children and the country as a whole.

However, the APC party Deputy Opposition Leader – Ibrahim Ben Kargbo MP, said even though they had good reason not to be part of the screening process, they knew about Kai-Kai’s  capabilities.

Independent member of parliament for Pujehun District – Shiaka Musa Sama, praised President Bio for selecting qualified Sierra Leoneans to serve in public office. He referred to Dr. Francis Kai-Kai as “passionate about development”.

He said the only way to effect change in the New Direction is putting the right people in the right places and Dr. Kai-Kai best suites the position.

Concluding the debate, the Leader of Government Business – Mohamed Sidie Tunis MP also commended President Bio for nominating qualified Sierra Leoneans to serve the country.

6 Comments

  1. SUBHANALLAH – Thank you for your kinds words, my sister Khadijah; Allah is ever merciful and compassionate. He will surely watch over us and keep our nation from descending into chaos and confusion. Take good care of yourself and your family…Blessings.

  2. Tougher laws for RAPE? OH YES! But NO to ARRESTING and TEAR GASING of political opponents on the pretext of STATE OF EMERGENCY ON RAPE. We told them from the start that it was not a good idea but, they were stubborn as usual to listen. Now that they have come to their senses. It’s welcome news. I hope they listen next time. GOD HELP OUR PARLIAMENTARIANS.

  3. Rape in all its forms should be frowned upon by any law-abiding society – It is a despicable thing! Men who commit rape are just as bad as murderers; they are filthy scumbags, who perhaps, have also been raised by other heartless, sexual predators, who were seen as mentors and guides – unremorseful family members, acquaintances and friends.

    Rape has a most disgusting characteristic that surrounds and accompanies it like the unbearable stench coming from a company of vultures, feasting on rotten flesh. I cannot stand hearing about it because it offends me – come rain or shine, day or night, I will always be totally against it!

    Rape is incomparable in its brutality, compared to murder, that begins and finishes the barbaric act of extinguishing a life totally and completely; not so with Rape – it rips out the hearts of its victims and carries them away, dripping blood, like a thief who had stolen and absconded with the owners most prized possessions.

    Yep, it kills and buries its victims, yet keeps them still breathing and alive. Studies have proven that victims of rape never fully recover physically, mentally and psychologically from their terrifying traumatic ordeals they have suffered at the hands of men. To put simply, they remain scarred for life, violated, disfigured and lacerated mentality by the brutal, lustful appetites of monsters, unfit to be called human beings – men full of rage, venom, violence and anger.

    But then again this is only a limited perspective, in such critical matters, a one-sided approach towards understanding and highlighting the origins and causes of any vice will not suffice – to cure a disease, habit or an abominable act, the root causes must first be found and examined, before they can be processed to be studied again, diagnosed, cured and solved.

    Customs, lifestyle,and communally acceptable norms are just a few of the reasons responsible for feeding and nourishing the tendencies of rape. In some African countries, rape is laughed at and the victims are ridiculed, teased and mocked. And the saddest thing is that it is done, not in hatred, but mainly through the playful attitudes of older women, who themselves had once suffered the same brutal acts, mercilessly at the hands of men and consider it as nothing at all.’Quit making a fuss over nothing’, some girls are told – Imagine that,just for a second!

    Again in some countries in Africa, it is not unusual to see children who are virgins being given to men as old, withering and wrinkled as the Llangernyw Yew tree,that was estimated to be 5000 years old. And it doesn’t end there – some men unfortunately, have been raised and nurtured in environments where women are openly abused and treated as sex objects, that were created to quench the sexual thirsts and appetites of men.

    Some religions indirectly,are also responsible for the stigmatization and unfair treatment of women, through the daily declarations they utter and beliefs they proudly promote. Let me be a little clear – to some intelligent men such religious pronouncements may be seen as attempts to emphasize the advantages and differences between the two sexes, but for others, who are either illiterate or mentally – impaired, it is a loud trumpet being blown, declaring war, calling on men to use their strength, resources and abilities to overpower, marginalise and subdue women. Heartbreaking isn’t it?

    Now let us refocus our lenses of scrutiny and judgement once again – poverty, social, moral and economic deprivations can also be counted in the mix of things responsible for creating the atmosphere and conditions, that make rape in our societies, easily practicable and permissible – young girls, in numbers, equaling the sizes of large armies, are increasingly becoming commercial prostitutes, walking the streets late at night, exposing their vulnerable selves to the wrath of wicked, mean-spirited, inconsiderate men because of their hunger and thirsts for money.

    You can write all the declarations,and keep on writing, all the proclamations, decrees and executive orders you want – it will only solve very little. What is urgently needed is an improvement in the standards of living, sustainable economic and social reliefs and a meticulous orientation of communities, that is geared distinctly towards helping our people understand and appreciate the benefits of respecting the rights of women and girls and the severe consequences that come with criminal offenses against them.

    Lastly, lions don’t roam, without growling at one of their own. Shout-out to the APC members of Parliament for displaying a good sense of judgement in this matter – Bravo! Rising Sun Will Rise Again.

    • Alahmdulillah Bro. Saidu, well said and written. May Allah taalaa guide us and our nation, and make it a better for our offsprings. Ameen.

  4. It is Good To Select The Right Person For the Right Position As H.E.Bio Did Putting Mr Kai Kai For The Better Of Sierra Leone.

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