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ECOWAS Parliament to wade into Sierra Leone crises – sets up fact finding team



By Linda Ike

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament has resolved to intervene in the violent situation that recently rocked Sierra Leone.

The Parliament is planning to send a fact finding team to unravel the cause of the crises and to investigate the level of damages suffered.

Recalled that at least six protesters and six police officers were killed as anti-Government protests in Sierra Leone turned violent, according to an eye witness. learnt that hundreds of people took to the streets to register their grievances over economic conditions in the country and to protest the perceived failure by the Government to cushion the effect of rising prices.

Chairman of the Committee on Political Affairs, Peace, Security and African Peer Review Mechanism ( (APRM) of the ECOWAS Parliament Hon. Edwin Melvin Snowe who addressed the media during a delocalised meeting of the ECOparl in Banjul, Gambia said the parliament is worried about the situation that culminated into loss of lives and destruction of property.

“The situation in Sierra Leone is very incredible, the ECOWAS Commission has condemned the situation, the Speaker of ECOWAS Parliament also a Sierra Leonean has also condemned the situation. There is an ongoing investigation. we will not hesitate as this committee will recommend once we have an additional information we will dispatch a small team there to do the fact finding that borders on the lives and property destruction over the recent crisis there .”

Snowe disclosed that the ECOWAS Parliament Speaker, Hon. Sidie Tunis who is from Sierra Leone has agreed to the plans of the parliament to send a team to his country on a fact finding mission.

According to him, there is a growing wave of intense concerns over the situation especially as Sierra Leone will go to the polls next year.

He said, “the life of every human being is very important. We saw on social media how the police were killed and some people have also been killed. It is a very real situation. We take this no more at ECOWAS and we can’t sit with folded arms and watch the situation or allow it to escalate before we react.

“So, for the situation in Sierra Leone, we are very concerned about it but like I said before, the president of ECOWAS Commission has issued a statement and the ECOWAS Parliament Speaker has also issued a statement and the Speaker was very magnanimous.

“When you come to Sierra leone, he is a member of the ruling party and he had a meeting with the opposition and they have agreed on the way forward .

“So, that is commendable because he bridged all the gaps as a member of sierra leone parliament and a member of a ruling party and put on a cap as a Speaker of the community parliament .

“And the speaker absolutely has no objection to that. I discussed with him and he has no objection with the parliament sending a small team to speak to the stakeholders and speak to the parliament to see how best we can ensure that such does not repeat itself for that matter or any other member states.”

The lawmaker expressed worry over the crisis rocking some west African countries, adding that the parliament is determined to work in ensuring that the region is free from crisis taking cognizance of the unborn generations to come.

“Peace is extremely important and our region is very fragile. We are concerned about the situation in the region. Today, we have crisis in Guinea , Mali, and Burkina Faso .so, it’s no fun that our region out of fifteen member states , three member states are in crisis. We are very concerned about it.

“In Sierra leone we saw the violence , we saw the military coup in Guinea Bissau . So, we are very concerned about the situation in our region. We want to ensure that our region is safe and sound so that not just our generation but the unborn generations can enjoy the fruit of our labour so that our region will be in peace,” he stated.

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