The Technical Working Group (TWG) set up to review the IPCB Regulations, 2013, and make appropriate recommendations for the development of an ‘Independent Police Oversight Commission Bill’ has submitted its Report to the Board.
The review exercise aims at strengthening the work of the IPCB to discharge its oversight role of investigating and advising members of the Sierra Leone Police.
The TWG was also created to provide support and guidance throughout the entire process of the reviewing of the said regulations, and mandated to critically look at the limitations in the said regulations, building on regional and international best practices and provide support and guidance during the whole process of information gathering leading up to the actual drafting of a Bill that will be presented to Parliament.
The group comprised of a Consultant/Facilitator, Amnesty International, Human Rights Commission Sierra Leone, Sierra Leone Bar Association, Anti-Corruption Commission, Centre for Accountability and Rule of Law, Law Reform Commission, Law Officers’ Department, Ombudsman Office Police Council Representative, Ministry of Internal Affairs Representative, UNDP Rep. (Observer) and the IPCB.
The exercise commenced with Countrywide Consultative Engagements with a range of stakeholders in Bo and Kenema for the Southern and Eastern Regions from 23rd – 25th April 2019; North East and North – West Regions from 6th – 9th May 2019; and in the Western Area on 10th May 2019. Key stakeholder participants included Members of Parliament, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Justice, Law Reform Commission (LRC), Drivers’ Union, Bike Riders’ Union, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) among others.
There was overwhelming support for a broad package of measures to create and empower a new Entity through legislation to replace the Regulations currently in place which in several ways had restricted the IPCB’s capacity to perform.
The activity was supported by the UNDP under its project – Strengthening the Rule of Law, Security and Human Rights in Sierra Leone, which aimed at strengthening Justice and Security sector institutions to deliver effective services closer to the people and in compliance with human rights standards.