Sierra Leone's Vice President says his removal "unlawful and unconstitutional"

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The Vice President of Sierra Leone, Alhaji Samuel Sam Sumana has described his removal from office as "unlawful and unconstitutional".

Sam Sumana was reacting to his removal from office by the President, Ernest Bai Koroma Tuesday night noting that he was not appointed by the President but was "duly elected by the people of Sierra Leone, pursuant to section 54 sub-section 3 of the Constitution of Sierra Leone".

He said in a press release issued Wednesday 18 that "the President has no power under the constitution to relieve him of his duties as Vice President".

He described his "purported sacking as ultravires of the constitution of the country which he said has to be respected".

"As a peaceful and law abiding citizen of the country, I have instructed my legal team to pursue the matter in the Supreme Court of the country", said Sam Sumana.

In the interim, the Vice President has advised all his supporters to "remain calm and law abiding".

Meanwhile, a non-governmental organization, the Center for Accountability and the Rule of Law (CARL) has also condemned the action of the President noting that "the President did not follow the due process of the law in removing the Vice President from office".

Abu Tommy of the center said, according to the ruling party All People's Congress, Sam Sumana had about 30 days to appeal. But he wondered whether he was given that opportunity.

Three Associations from Kono, the hometown of the Sam Sumana, issued a joint statement criticizing the manner in which the Vice President was removed from office.

In the joint statement they said, "we are deeply concerned over the dismissal of the Vice President together with the use of force to disarm his bodyguards and remove a duly elected civilian as the Vice President".

The statement went on, "as Christians and Muslims and descendants of Kono we look forward to a peaceful resolution of the impasse". Endi

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