youth activists, former minister
According to opposition All People’s Congress (APC) supporters, there is genuine fear that their party is slowly succumbing to a painful death. They blame the party for not only losing its voice in the sixth parliament but for also failing to speak up and out on sociopolitical issues with the tendency to paint Sierra Leone through the eyes of the ruling party government.
Some young and passionate youth activists and a former government minister belonging to the APC have confided in Daybreak that they believe that the party is dead and will need to do something drastic to encourage their supporters that all is well.
At present the youth activists say the party is in desperate need of a lifeline to keep it from being in the opposition going into the foreseeable future.
The upset supporters of the main opposition say so far no one in the party is showing any sign of leading the party with many going as far as saying that the party’s only lifeline is the Tripartite Committee.
“What is the relevance of the APC right now? We do not have a credible position in parliament to counter against anything the SLPP might throw at us. If the Tripartite Committee wasn’t at work it would have been very hard to predict where and what the party would have been up to; we would have in effect been on a news blackout from the party,” said a local party youth chair.
The young man said the party as an opposition is dead because they have accepted their fate from the ruling party and are not doing anything to show that they are not willing to play by the dictates of the SLPP.
Commenting further the party activist say many of the party’s ranking members that were expected to raise and keep certain issues current have all been accused of being complicit in a ploy against the party to see President Bio complete his second term despite the challenge being put up against the result of the presidential election as announced by electoral commissioner Mohamed K. Konneh.
“We do not have a credible opposition in parliament. There is no law that the APC would want to pass that they will not succeed in passing. Where is the opposition in all this? The SLPP has an overwhelming majority in the house so we don’t see how relevant is the APC in terms of providing a credible opposition,” the youth activist lamented.
Said another: “You remember that the leader of the SLPP, His Excellency President Julius Maada Bio, used to say that he does not plan on handing power over to the APC? Well many people viewed this utterance as he will not give power to the APC even if they win the election. No! What President Bio meant by that is that he plans on handing power over to another SLPP candidate or flagbearer. But how does he plan on accomplishing this? Well, he has shown us by ensuring that the SLPP government have the overwhelming majority in parliament. A weak opposition is not able to challenge the plans and actions of the ruling party. This is why we say the APC is dead.”
Speaking to a high ranking member of the APC, she admitted that the youth activists are right in their estimation of the main opposition party.
‘Any party that cannot provide credible opposition in the house can never make or form a credible party government. Since he started changing electoral laws not limited to the use of the PR system of election and deciding on the make and color of the electoral commission for Sierra Leone we can see that Mr. Bio was long strategizing for a day like this when we will see the APC rendered ineffective. Can anyone in the APC tell me how the party plans on stopping the excesses of the government when we don’t even have a say on how laws and other legal agreements are passed and so accepted by the people via their representatives when the expectation is that the SLPP does not expect any credible opposition to any of their proposals in parliament,’ said the former government minister.
She reiterated a point made earlier that the only issue acting as a lifeline for the APC is the expectations of the society towards the conclusion of the work and recommendation of the Tripartite Committee.
‘If it wasn’t for this committee’s work it would have been difficult to hear about the APC because we don’t even have anyone in parliament. It would have been hard to hear about Dr. Samura Kamara, President Ernest Bai Koroma and Chernor Maju Bah if it wasn’t for the work of this committee because we should not expect anything from members of the Sixth Parliament,’ the former cabinet minister added.