Bong County District # 6 Representative Adam Corneh says he is committed to representing his county in the 2016/2017 National Budget hearing which is expected to be resumed by the House Joint Committee on Ways, Means, Finance and Development Planning and Public Accounts.
The National Patriotic Party (NPP) lawmaker, who is a member of the House Budget Committee, expressed his commitment to the scheduled hearing of the expenditure component of the budget which is expected to be released on Friday.
The pending budget’s scheduled hearing is based on yesterday’s budget meeting.
In an exclusive interview yesterday, Rep. Corneh said the House Budget Committee is convinced that the national budget with the support of the Executive will be passed before the end of September, which overlaps with their annual break.
The Bong County lawmaker, who is also a member of the Public Account & Expenditure Committee and co-chairman on Commerce and Industries, said, “We are sure to restart scrutinizing the budget and we hope agents of the Executive would appear before the Committee to make it speedy,” Rep. Corneh said.
It may be recalled that in mid-July the expenditure component of the budget was interrupted as a result of the development of two factions in the Lower House, one for and the other against House Speaker Alex Tyler’s recusal because of his indictment in the Global Witness Report bribery case.
Prior to the disruption of the expenditure component of the budget, the revenue component ended fruitfully after a month of deliberations with nearly thirty (30) ministries and agencies of government explaining strategies they wish to employ to raise taxes and non-tax revenues for the fiscal period.
The examination of the US$555.9 million budget began after its submission on Monday, May 16, 2016, by Finance Minister Boima Kamara.
Rep. Corneh said he remains committed to upholding the Constitution of the country.
“Our constitution guarantees that every person must be treated with dignity and equality and that one is innocent until proven guilty,” he said.
He added, “My people in Bong County District # 6 elected me twice to the Legislature and every member of the House of Representatives, including me, swore an oath to defend and uphold the constitution of the country.”
The Bong County lawmaker said the actions of some of his colleagues to compel the recusal of the Speaker through a resolution based on a criminal indictment, and then by having separate (or parallel) sessions, is discretional and unlawful.
“Most of what they said in their resolution are wild allegations or without legal reliance,” Rep. Corneh contended.
“In the House standing Rule 9, the Speaker, Deputy Speaker and other officers of the House may be removed from office for a cause by two-thirds majority of the members of the House. What cause has my colleagues established? Where is the two-thirds majority? Has the Speaker been heard? The answers are all NO!
“I stand with the Constitution and our House Rules and Procedures and I support that the Speaker should be removed constitutionally by two-thirds (49 persons) and duly through votes in the House Chamber,” he added.