Mixed feelings did engulf members as well as supporters of the All People Congress (APC) party, after losing the 2018 multi-tier elections to the Sierra Leone People Party (SLPP).
This was disclosed by the National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Cornelius Devaux at their party headquarters last Thursday 22 November when the party unveiled members of its constitutional review committee.
He confirmed that after losing the 2018 elections, there were lots of mixed feelings within the APC as a party.
In order to address these mixed feelings, the National Advisory Committee (NAC) of the party established a 9 man committee that was charged with the responsibility to introspect into the entire membership within the length and breadth of the country to ascertain the causes of losing the election.
Many concerns were recorded by the committee of nine, but principal among these concerns is the view to review the December 1995 constitution of the APC party.
Devaux furthered that a cardinal demand of the general membership of the APC is reforms, which could not be made possible without looking into the constitution of the party in order to be in consonance with provisions as embedded in it (the APC constitution).
He stressed that whatever concerns that will be brought up by the constitutional review committee will be treated seriously and allow to go through the due processes of laws governing political parties in the country. This, he believes will give the party victory come 2023.
According to Ambassador Osman FodayYansaneh, the National Secretary General of the APC, in order to respond to the cries of their people after the defeat in the 2018 elections, they decided to review thier constitution.
“We still hold the view that the election was stolen from us, a reason the matter is still in the Supreme Court of the country for hearing. We also want to admit that mistakes did take place running to the election which prompted the setting up of the nine man committee to ask our people were we went wrong,” Yansaneh stressed.
Ambassador Yansaneh further stated that, they also asked of their recommendations, pointing out that they have made what they refered to as ‘a road map for 2023.’
“However, a major concern raised by our people is that of reviewing the 1995 constitution of the APC,” he mentioned.
He expressed that, every country has a source to their constitution.
“There was a National Council of the Colony of Sierra Leone (NCCSL). This party was in existence before the coming of the SLPP in 1951. The SLPP didn’t just start like that, they started with a constitution,” he explained.
He added that the first constitution of the APC is the 1960 constitution, which gave birth to the 1978 constitution as a way of responding to the One Party System of government at that time and that in 1991 of October, the 1991 constitution of APC was launched as sequel to the 1995 constitution of the APC which people have suggested needs to be overhauled.
“It was this constitution (the 1995 constitution) that we used in 1996 when we were not allowed to campaign but managed to secure 5 seats; we used it in 2002 and emerged as the second largest political party in parliament; we did use this very constitution is 2004 for the local council elections as well as for the 2007 general elections and every other election to date. And we did win majority of those elections, “ Yansanneh highlighted.
He explained that because they did not win the 2018 elections, the people said that the APC party is not subject to change but that he did tell them that if they were not a progressive party that does respond to change, they would have decayed.
“ We responded to the NPRC dictatorship that was why we created the APC 1995 constitution,” he said.
He stressed that, the constitutional review committee will be provided with all of these constitutions in addition with constitutions of other political parties for scrutiny.
“Most of the political parties in existence drew their constitution in line with our constitution,” he maintained.
The 26 selected members of the constitutional review committee were inaugurated by the Deputy Chairman and Leader of the APC, Hon. Minkailu Mansaray on behalf of the Chairman and Leader of the party.
As the APC is now set to review their 1995 December constitution which will be done by the 26 inaugurated persons of which Ambassador Dauda Kamara, Ambassador Edward Turay and Ambassador Osman FodayYansaneh will be serving as resource persons to this committee, concerned Sierra Leoneans are waiting to see what the new constitution will bring into fruition but question on the lips of many is whether the review constitution will lead the APC to State House in 2023.