The Constitutional Review Committee (CRC) has published an abridged draft report of the constitution on the internet.

CRC-Constitutional Review Committee Sierra Leone

According to the Communications Officer of the CRC, Mohamed Faray Kargbo, the said report can be accessed at www.Constitutionalreview.gov.sl

Speaking yesterday on the said report at the committee’s secretariat at the Miata Conference Centre, Freetown, the Chair of the committee, Justice Edmond Cowan said after the launch of the committee, they have gone all over the country doing consultations and receiving position papers from various groups.

He said in addition to that, they also distributed questionnaires to members of the public so that they could send in their views on some of the issues in the 1991 constitution.

“All that we gathered formed the source of this document,” he affirmed.

He went on to say that in this report, there are five proposed new chapters that have been added, and that there are also the existing ones which they are working on. The chapters are local government, citizenship, land and natural resources, information communication and the media and the national development planning commission.

“This is not the final draft, we need to go back to the people and show what we have done so far,” he went on, adding that if the public has questions or comments they can come back to them before the committee prepares the final draft that will be handed to the president.

He added that there are controversial issues that needed to be taken back the public, “for instance, issues relating to death penalty and the political parties’ registration fees”.

Justice Cowan also added that the draft report will be circulated to provincial secretaries and mayors, among others, who will in turn disseminate it to the stakeholders whom they will meet at a later date.

He noted that the constitution cannot be credible without the stamp of the people.


 

Key issues proposed include the following:

🔷 Four New Chapters have been developed-
1. Local Government and Decentralization

2. Lands, Natural Resources and the Environment

3. Citizenship

4. Information, Communication and the Media

🔷The Office of Attorney General separated from the Minister of Justice

🔷 Local Council Elections to be conducted every 5 year instead of four

🔷Local Council Elections to be non-political

🔷Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Council Elections to be held on a fixed calendar date

🔷The President is not exempted from personal taxation

🔷The President should no longer be a Member of Parliament

🔷A House of Paramount Chiefs to be created. No second Chamber or Senate

🔷CRC is seeking further information on whether or not the death penalty should be abolished

🔷The retirement age of Judges/Justices of the Superior Court of Judicature shifted from 65 to 70 years

🔷The African Negro requirement to be a citizen of Sierra Leone should be eliminated

🔷Stateless children under 5 years found in Sierra Leone should be granted citizenship status

🔷The Chief Justice to be appointed by the Judicial and Legal Service Commission

🔷The two land tenure systems in the country should be harmonized

🔷The President and Vice President should not be removed from office if they lose their political party membership after assumption of office

🔷 The President and Vice President should only be removed from office in accordance with the procedures set out in Sec 50 and 51 of the 1991 Constitution

🔷Members of Parliament should only be qualified for pension and gratuity after serving two consecutive terms as MPs.

🔷Education, health and right to shelter are now justiciable

🔷 The term of office of the President should remain as it is in the 1991 Constitution-Maximum of two terms of 5 years each whether the terms are consecutive or not

Key issues proposed include the following:

🔷 Four New Chapters have been developed-
1. Local Government and Decentralization

2. Lands, Natural Resources and the Environment

3. Citizenship

4. Information, Communication and the Media

🔷The Office of Attorney General separated from the Minister of Justice

🔷 Local Council Elections to be conducted every 5 year instead of four

🔷Local Council Elections to be non-political

🔷Presidential, Parliamentary and Local Council Elections to be held on a fixed calendar date

🔷The President is not exempted from personal taxation

🔷The President should no longer be a Member of Parliament

🔷A House of Paramount Chiefs to be created. No second Chamber or Senate

🔷CRC is seeking further information on whether or not the death penalty should be abolished

🔷The retirement age of Judges/Justices of the Superior Court of Judicature shifted from 65 to 70 years

🔷The African Negro requirement to be a citizen of Sierra Leone should be eliminated

🔷Stateless children under 5 years found in Sierra Leone should be granted citizenship status

🔷The Chief Justice to be appointed by the Judicial and Legal Service Commission

🔷The two land tenure systems in the country should be harmonized

🔷The President and Vice President should not be removed from office if they lose their political party membership after assumption of office

🔷 The President and Vice President should only be removed from office in accordance with the procedures set out in Sec 50 and 51 of the 1991 Constitution

🔷Members of Parliament should only be qualified for pension and gratuity after serving two consecutive terms as MPs.

🔷Education, health and right to shelter are now justiciable

🔷 The term of office of the President should remain as it is in the 1991 Constitution-Maximum of two terms of 5 years each whether the terms are consecutive or not