By: Muhammed Lamin Drammeh
The National Assembly Member representing Foni Kansala, Almameh Gibba, has strongly opposed the Judicial Remuneration Bill presented to the parliament by Attorney General and Justice Minister Dawda Jallow, describing the bill as a “volcano to Gambians” and called for its rejection, citing that it only favours a particular group of public servants.
Hon. Gibba was participating in the debate over the Judicial Remuneration Bill that will enable superior judges to have a lifetime salary even after their retirement.
He emphatically rejected the bill and urged the lawmakers to throw it out.
“This bill is a volcano bill to Gambian people. Let’s trash this out and bury it 40 feet down. We don’t have to waste our time on this. We have to be honest,” he said.
He argued that judges are not superior to teachers or soldiers as all of them are civil servants. Therefore, he suggested that the justice minister should prioritize civil service reforms instead of backing the bill that would only benefit a few. Moreover, he also argued that the bill is discriminatory because it does not apply to clerks working in the court who are also entitled to the same benefits as judges.
Gibba added that he is not against progressive laws, but against a bill that favours only a few people.
“I am not against the progression of the law. I am also not against the welfare of the judges or non-judges. But what I am not in for is to favour one cohort group and leave others”, he said.
The National Assembly Member for Kiang West also debated against the Judicial Remuneration Bill 2023 and called for the sanitation of the bill.
The Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Dawda Jallow made a second reading of the Judicial Remuneration Bill, 2023 today for the NAMs to debate over it. Most of the bills were part of the rejected draft constitution in 2020.