The Majority Leader of Parliament and Leader of Government Business, Edward Turay has outlined a twelve (12) point development plan for the country.
Proposing a motion of thanks before Parliament, in response to the President on his speech delivered on the occasion of the State Opening of the Second Republic of Sierra Leone, he outlined his development plan for the Country.
He stating that in controlling a Government, the needs of the People must be met and that radical re-thinking was needed to control the series of financial wastage thereby scrapping the light beast of the system. The Majority Leader recommended a fiscal discipline by Government with the determination of Parliament to look at the proposed MDA budgets and to weed out wastages.
He posited that the Prisons Department must be down-sized and inmates also reduced. A Lawyer by profession, he made reference to light offences like loitering for which offenders receive up to 3-4 years jail term; leaving the cells to become over populated. He suggested that life should be brought back to the prisoners and that a pay roll system should be introduced.
He then recommended for the disbandment of Boarding Schools, which he said are not necessary at this time considering the proliferation of Community Schools and the cost involved in feeding each student.
The Majority Leader also called for the scrapping of the Government’s Grants- in
Aid award to students to be converted to student loans; wherein students would have to pay later after their graduation.
He also proposed the scraping of funds to Private Schools and asked why Government continues to subsidize them.
“We spend on other areas that are not productive and at times when government officials want to represent the country out side, there are no funds” he said.
He frowned at the conduct of workshops, seminars and symposia as areas where government monies are been wasted; thus raising concern and worries about the misuse of procurement procedures. He also expressed displeasure at the numerous celebrations which cause government to loose huge sums and the lavish preparations by Senior Civil Servants when organizing programmes coupled with the misuse of the top up cards for personal purposes.
What he stressed as disturbing is the misuse of government vehicles by Civil Servants; who use them to either transport charcoal, sand, sticks, woods and even passengers.
He ended his development plan for the country on the few customs officers and tax defaulters that are either siphoning funds or converting it for their selfish use.
The MP stressed that if these minute leakages are stopped, government would realize something and thereby cease to depend on donor support.
Meanwhile Parliament has started debating the five allotted day accorded them on the President’s speech.
By Ishmael Bayoh