By Shadrach Aziz Kamara
Members of Parliament representing various opposition Political parties have joined members of Parliament of the ruling SLPP government and supported the motion for the postponement of Local Council’s Elections to 2023.
The endorsement for the postponement of the Local Council Elections came to effect after the House of Parliament debated and passed into law the Local Government Amendment Act, 2022.
The Bill further seeks to amend the Local Government Act 2004; to extend the period for local council elections from four years to five years. Also, to extend the tenure of the chairperson and councilors from four years to five years. Furthermore to reduce the budget costs and to provide for other related matters.
Presenting the Bill in the Well of Parliament, the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Dr. Tamba Lamina said that the Local Government Amendment Act 2022 would make local councils’ elections permanent and to be conducted in line with the general elections every five years and he highlighted the challenges presently involved in conducting Local Council’s elections.
Hon. Emerson Saa Lamina Leader of the C4C said that the bill before the House is appropriate and decried the past Government and the Minister that were in charged, MayarKaiKai for failing to address the issues including slating an appropriate date for Local Council Election in line with the general election. He said it is appropriate for the postponement of the Local Councils Election to five years, adding that it costs US $24 Million to conduct Local Government Elections by the National Electoral Commission
Hon. Daniel Koroma of the main opposition APC said that the bill before the House is simple and commendable and noted that, the amendment bill would seek local Council’s election to be conducted in every five years instead of four years, adding that they are in support of the bill in moving the election to five years instead of four years.
Rounding up the debate, Leader of Government Business Hon. Mathew Nyuma commended MPs for their contributions and expressed that Parliament has taken the right step in the right direction. He commended the Minister for strengthening democracy in asking Parliament to defer the Local Councils Elections to five years.