By Ragan M. Conteh
The Parliament of Sierra Leone, on Friday 20th November 2020, in Committee Room One, Parliament Building, had a virtual validation session for its five year Strategic Plan to enhance its operational effectiveness from 2021-2025.
This virtual stakeholders’ validation session was supported by the EU Governance Sector Programme in Sierra Leone.
The Clerk of Parliament, Directors, Deputy Directors, Heads of Units and other Staff of Parliament who were in attendance made meaningful contributions and inputs towards the validation process. Representatives of UNDP and WFD were also in attendance and made significant contributions.
Project Director for EU Governance Sector Programme, Sinisa Duric, said, among other things, that the EU is committed to strengthening the capacity of the Parliament of Sierra Leone in many spheres in order to enhance its operational efficiency for national development; citing legislation, representation and oversight.
Speaking on the theory of change, Consultant for the development of the Strategic Plan, Dr. Rasheed Draman, recalled that only 35% of the last Strategic Plan was implemented due to lack of funding.
Explaining the different types of legislatures, including transformative, emerging, and rubber-stamp, Dr. Draman said the Strategic Plan has 23 objectives laced with five goals, which include building the institutional capacity of Parliament, strengthening lawmaking, oversight, representation and relationship with citizens and resource mobilization for implementation.
Dr. Draman also spoke of the need to making the Office of the Clerk of Parliament nonpartisan through recruitment by the Parliamentary Service Commission with a secured tenure as in Ghana and the construction and staffing of offices for MPs, both in Parliament and their Constituencies, like what Ghana and other legislatures have done, to enhance the effectiveness of MPs and their Parliament aimed at meeting the expectations of their constituents and the general citizenry.
The Director of Center for Research and Parliamentary Studies, Mr. Mohamed Jalloh, did the welcome address and the Director of Parliamentary Assistance Coordination explained the background and purpose of the validation.