Thursday, February 3, 2011

National Assembly frowns on Sport Ministry, NSC


Minister Gomez
The National Assembly Select Committee on Youth and Sport on January 25, 2011 questioned and strictly address the Minister of Youth and Sport, his Permanent Secretary and the Acting Executive Secretary of the National Sport Council (NSC) for what they describe as a disrespect and failure to adhere to the decision of the National Assembly.
On December 30, 2010 the Select Committee issued a Report on its findings on the Gambia National Olympic Committee (GNOC) presidential crises and as well set February 12, 2011 for the presidential elections.
However, the NSC Acting Executive Secretary Abdul Azziz Titao Mendy on Monday January 24 issued a media dispatch, protesting the decision of the Select Committee and also advised the Minister of Youth and Sport to set up a tribunal to look into the matter already resolved by the legislature.
On Tuesday, the Speaker of the National Assembly Hon. Abdoulie Bojang stressed that the Sport Minister Sheriff Gomez, his PS Alieu Jammeh and Ag.Exe-Sec NSC Mr. Abdul Azziz Titao Mendy have been found affronting and challenging the dignity, authority, integrity and decision of the National Assembly.
Thus making them liable for deliberate contempt of the National Assembly as per the provisions of Section 110 of the 1997 Constitution of the Republic of The Gambia.
The Committee noted that the three sport officials after failing to take serious, a respondent letter addressed to them by the Clerk of National Assembly after they wrote to urge the Speaker of the Assembly to call for a review of the decision of the Committee on GNOC crises.
Hon. Bojang noted that the Clerk of the Assembly made it sternly clear to the three sports officials that “the decision of the relevant Select Committee of Parliament is not subject to review or approval by any other Authority, Body or Court.” “And your non-compliance may tantamount to a contempt of the National Assembly as in provisions of sections, (102), (109-03) and (110) respectively of the 1997 Constitution.”
The sport officials were asked to write an apology to the National Assembly through the office of the Speaker within 24 hours. 
The Majority leader of the National Assembly Hon. Fabakary Tombong Jatta, in reference to the Jan. 24 story of the Daily Observer, “NSC protests against GNOC voter list ruling.”
Titao Mendy admitted writing the press release, but denies the caption and that it was not a protest against the national assembly. “Hon. Speaker, I have the evidence of a press release that I sent to the papers and not the caption as written in the Daily Observer and not a protest against the National Assembly,” he said, adding that he got the clearance from the sport minister.
Minister Gomez on his part admitted giving Titao the go ahead with the press release after arguing: “Well I am just trying to set the basis because I was just told by the Secretary General that I have to come to answer to the Speaker. I did not know there was a sitting in place. I did not know anything about this.”
Permanent Secretary Alieu Jammeh also noted that he had a clearance from his minister before writing a letter to the Clerk of the National Assembly.
“Honourable Speaker, with this, the Minister, his Permanent Secretary and the acting Executive Secretary of the NSC are in contempt of the National Assembly. It is regrettable that people of high standing attempt to put the National Assembly into disrepute,” declared. Source: The Voice

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