Member of Parliament for Constituency 062 in the Kambia District under the National Grand Coalition (NGC) party Hon. Alhaji Dr. Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella and three other NGC MPs on Wednesday 25th April 2018 did not cast their vote in the election for Speaker of Parliament at the First Sitting of the Fifth Parliament of the Second Republic.
According to Dr. Yumkella, he his other MPs from the NGC boycotted the vote because of lack of constitutionality, noting that they will not support anything that is not constitutional as troops of police men forcibly removed 68 Members of Parliament of the All People’s Congress which is about 45% – 48% of their members.
He added that is it unprecedented and wrong to replace APC unconstitutionality with junta democracy, adding that they cannot support any process that removes so many people from parliament as it has never occurred before in our parliament.
“Our abstention is not in objection to the Speaker; our objection is to the process. The constitution is clear; all members should be here. The Standing Orders are clear, all members should be here,” Dr. Yumkella said when speaking to AYV.
He also noted that in principle they cannot support or participate in validating a process that is being used against the constitution as they were elected by people from the different constituencies to represent them in parliament.
According to Dr. Yumkella two absentees out of 112 from the previous parliament is insignificant to the 68 absentees out of 146, noting that when half of the parliamentarians are absent, it is wrong and that besides, parliament is a sacred house for troops of police to enter and remove elected MPs in large numbers.
“Everybody knows that I am not a friend or a sympathizer of the APC because I have been a victim of the APC. But for police to forcibly remove people in parliament is wrong for democracy and I cannot support that,” Dr. Yumkella said.