Parliament of Sierra Leone
|Parliament of Sierra Leone|
Speaker of Parliament
|17 November 2012|
|House of Parliament, Tower Hill, Freetown|
The Parliament of Sierra Leone is the unicameral legislative body of the Republic of Sierra Leone. It is occasionally known as the House of Representatives. The meeting place of Parliament is at the House of Parliament building at Tower Hill in the capital Freetown. Members of Parliament of Sierra Leone are addressed as the Honourable.
The Sierra Leone Parliament has a total of 124 seats. 112 members are directly elected every five years, usually during the presidential election. The remaining 12 seats in Parliament are filled by appointed paramount chiefs from each of the country's 12 provincial districts. Each one of the 112 directly elected members of Parliament represents a constituency, across the country's fourteen administrative Districts. A District representation in the House of Parliament depends on a total population of the District.
The Sierra Leone House of Parliament is led by the Speaker of Parliament, who is the overall leader of Parliament, and is directly elected by sitting members of Parliament. The speaker is given the constitutional power to presides over parliament; calls members of parliament into session; and discipline members who break the rules of Parliament. The current Speaker of Parliament is the Honourable Abel Nathaniel Bankole Stronge ((APC), who was reelected unnoposed on December 7, 2012 for a new five-year term as Speaker.
The President of Sierra Leone Leone almost always referred to the Honourable members of Parliament during the beginning of a formal speech. Siaka Stevens and Ernest Bai Koroma are the two former members of Parliament that have gone on to become president.
To be qualified as Member of Parliament, the person must be a citizen of Sierra Leone; must be at least 21 years old; must be able to speak, read and write the English language with a degree of proficiency to enable him to actively take part in proceedings in Parliament; and must not have any criminal conviction.
In accordance with the 1991 constitution, Sierra Leone House of Parliament has many authority, including:
- Only Parliament can pass nationwide laws, but shall be sign and executed by the President
- The authority to impeach the President for violating the constitution
- Parliament must approve treaties, agreements or conventions with another nation
- Any declaration of war made by the President, must be approved by Parliament
- Parliament must approved the salary and allowances receive by the President
- Parliament must be notify of Commission of Inquiry set up by the President
- The authority to accept or reject cabinet ministers nominated by the President
- The President must update Parliament on the state of the country
- No person shall set up any military, or police force, except under the authority of Parliament
- The authority to approve justices of the High Court, Court of Appeal, Supreme Court, including the Chief Justice, before taking office
- The authority to approve senior civil service officers (including head of the National Electoral Commission), diplomats, military and police officers before assuming office
The current house of parliament, after the result of the just concluded 2012 Parliamentary elections, is made up of only the two largest political parties in the country: the All People's Congress (APC) 67 seats, the Sierra Leone People's Party (SLPP) 42 seats  (with three seats still yet to be decided)
Members of parliament were sworn in on December 7, 2012 for a new five-year term at the Sierra Leone House of Parliament in Freetown  were sworn in on December 7, 2012, after the result of the just concluded 2012 Parliamentary elections. will be made up of two political parties (with three seats still yet to be decided) with the following representations: the All People's Congress (APC) 67 seats, the Sierra Leone People's Party (SLPP) 42 seats.
- Speaker of Parliament
The Sierra Leone Parliament is led by the speaker of the parliament, who is overall the leader of parliament and is directly elected by his fellow sitting members of Parliament to be the speaker. The speaker is in charge of moderating debate in Parliament; introducing bills in parliament; making rulings in Parliament; leading negotiation with members of Parliament to pass bills; and announcing the results of votes passed by Parliament. The speaker is given the constitutional power to discipline members who break the rules of Parliament. The President of Sierra Leone work closely with the speaker of Parliament to help negotiate and pass a bill in the House of Parliament. The Speaker of Parliament always represents the majority or plurality party in Parliament and is often a key ally of the President, who is usually from the same party. The current speaker of Parliament is the Honourable Abel Nathaniel Bankole Stronge from the ruling All People's Congress (APC). He was re-elected unopposed by the newly elected sitting members of parliament on December 7, 2012 
- Majority leader of Parliament
The Majority leader of Parliament of Sierra Leone is a member of Parliament who is elected by his fellow sitting members of Parliament to act as the Party's leader. The Majority leader is always from the majority or plurality party in Parliament. The majority leader keeps party members in Parliament in order and lead a negotiation with members of his own party to support a bill introduce in Parliament. The Majority leader is usually a long term member of Parliament and is a key ally of the President of Sierra Leone, who are often from the same party. The President work closely with the majority leader to rally enough supports to pass a bill. The current Majority leader of Parliament is the Honourable Sheku Badara Bashiru Dumbuya from the ruling All People's Congress (APC), who was re-elected again on December 7, 2012.
- Minority Leader of Parliament
The minority leader of Parliament is a member of Parliament who is elected by members of the minority parties in Parliament to act as their leader. The Minority leader of Parliament is always from the plurality or largest minority party in Parliament and is the main opposition to the majority or ruling party. The minority leader keeps member of the minority parties in order, usually to oppoose a bill supported by members of the majority or ruling party. The President of Sierra Leone, the Speaker of Parliament, the Majority leader of Parliament closely work with the Minority leader of Parliament to rally enough support from the opposition parties to pass a bill. The Minority leader is often very critical of the president and the ruling party. The minority leader is about as influential in Parliament as the majority leader. The current Minority leader of Parliament is the Honourable Bernadette Lahai from the main opposition Sierra Leone People's Party. When the largest minority party becomes the majority in Parliament, the Minority leader almost always becomes the majority leader or even speaker of parliament.