todayinsenateplenary proceedings of the nigerian senate of wednesday 8th may 2019 - #TodayInSenatePlenary: Proceedings Of The Nigerian Senate Of Wednesday, 8th May, 2019

#TodayInSenatePlenary: Proceedings Of The Nigerian Senate Of Wednesday, 8th May, 2019

Saraki and Senate mace 1000x600 - #TodayInSenatePlenary: Proceedings Of The Nigerian Senate Of Wednesday, 8th May, 2019

Welcome to a new Legislative Day in the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria!

Senate President, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki led the Principal Officers into the chambers; took the official prayers; and began the day’s proceedings at 10:59 am.

Senator Buhari Abdulfatai moved for the approval of votes and proceedings of Tuesday, 7th May 2019. Senator Gilbert Nnaji seconded.

ANNOUNCEMENT
Senate President, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki read a letter from President Muhammadu Buhari declining assent to the following bills;

1. Nigeria Tourism Development Authority repeal and Enactment Bill, 2019.
2. Nigeria Inland waterways Authority Bill, 2019.

PRESENTATION OF BILLS – First Reading
1. Council for Regulation of Travel and Tour Management Companies of Nigeria (Est, etc) Bill, 2019 (HB. 1321). By Senator Ahmad Lawan

2. Dieticians Council of Nigeria (Est, etc) Bill, 2019 (HB. 547). By Senator Ahmad Lawan

3. Suppression of Piracy and other Maritime Offences Bill, 2019 (HB 1571). By Senator Ahmad Lawan

4. Chartered Institute of Social Work Practitioners (Est, etc) Bill, 2019 (HB. 1258). By Senator Ahmed Lawan

These bills were read and passed for First Reading.

PRESENTATION OF REPORTS
1.Reports of the Committee on Communications on the following;
a. Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF) Budget Proposal for the year ending 31st December 2019; and
b. Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) Budget proposal for the year ending 31st December 2019

The Report was LAID.

2. Report of the Committee on Downstream Petroleum Sector on the Promissory Note Programme and Bond Issuance for 19 Oil Marketers Outstanding Claims. By Senator Kabir G. Marafa

The Report was LAID.

3.Conference Committee Report on the National Fertilizer Quality (Control) Bill, 2019 (SB. 338). By Senator Abdullahi Adamu

The Report was LAID.

MOTIONS
1.Withholding of Assent by the Senate Leader.
-Recalls that the President C-in-C had signified that the withholding of his assent on the Nigerian Correctional Service Bill pursuant to Section 58(4) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended);

The Senate accordingly resolved to:
i. Rescind its earlier decision on Clauses 17(5) and 44(d) of the Bill; and
ii. Refer the Bill to the Committee of the Whole for Consideration and passage.

2. Urgent need to increase the number of Coaches to the Abuja-Kaduna Rail Line. By Senator Ali Ndume.

Senator Ali Ndume narrated his personal experience on the Abuja-Kaduna Rail Line where he was made to stand throughout the trip.

“Rail line is the oxygen and lifeline for the people plying the Abuja-Kaduna route. I think it is time to patronize our local manufacturers for coaches. This Motion should be forwarded to the Executive for fast implementation to disband ticket racketeering. – Senator Shehu Sani

Senator Ibn Na’Allah also harped on the need to increase the number of coaches to ease the stress on Nigerians travelling by rail.

“Kaduna is the most dangerous road in Nigeria today. The Chairman Senate Committee on Railway and Land Transport should proffer a quick solution” – Senator James Manager

“Only 12 coaches are ready out of 64 that has been paid for. However, the National Assembly has played its own role” – Senator Gbenga Ashafa

Senate accordingly resolved to:
i. Urge the Federal Government to deploy more coaches to the Abuja-Kaduna Rail Line to ameliorate the plight of the passengers; and
ii. Urge the Nigerian Railway Corporation to reduce the fare from N1,500 to N600 to make it affordable to the general public.

Additional Prayers:
iii. Urge the Federal Government to study the rail structure in relation to the cost to determine if the clamour for a price reduction from N1500 to N600 is realistic. – Sen. Magnus Abe
iv. There should be an increase in the number of coaches and frequency of trips. – Sen. Joshua Lidani

3. Committal of Proceeds of Crimes Bill, 2019. By Senator Ahmad Lawan

The Senate accordingly resolved to:
i. Rescind its decision on Clause 5 of the Proceed of Crimes Bill as passed and re-commit same to the Committee of the Whole for re-consideration and passage.

4. Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) and Local Government Finances. By Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi

“If we succeed in executing this, 60% of corruption in Nigeria will be resolved.
This will be a major landmark if the Senate decides to follow through its resolutions” – Sen. Ibn Na’Allah

“I support this motion and I urge my colleagues to do the same because it will boost the efficiency of local government governance in elevating poverty” – Senator Adamu Aliero

“The time of Local Government governance has come and I believe we should come to their rescue to save them from the shackles of the state Governors” – Senator George Akume

“We all know what is wrong and the laws are there. I hope that as we go along, we can institute a committee to monitor the disbursement and oversight of what is going on between the State Government & the Local Government” – Senator Abdullahi Adamu

“In some states, the State Government takes over the local government funds and abuses it. We have also witnessed Local Government Chairmen signing checks at the beer parlours” – Senator Jonah Jang

“This is a very important motion that addresses two things. First of all, we talked about the Local Government administration, which has been an issue of great concern.

For some of us that have had the opportunity to be Governors and also Legislators, it is clear that a few bad eggs tend to give the system a bad name in this area.

Apart from all this, there must be an interface between National Assembly and the Governors. We should allow local governments to have their autonomy.

I think it is important because it is clear that this is affecting the administration of local governments areas. So, I hope that State Assemblies would be able to make the necessary arrangements but it would require working with the Governors.

I think it is time the governors allow this to happen. I think it is better to try the full autonomy of the Local Governments and see how it works.

The second area is for us to commend the NFIU. Within less than two months, it has began to bring value.

This is a creation of the Senate through the National Assembly pushing through to see the establishment of NIFU and we are already seeing the benefits of it.

We remember when we started this process, it took a lot of courage to push it through and we can now see the benefit in both the private sector with the international community now lifting suspensions and Nigerian being upgraded.

So, I would like to commend the NIFU to continue along these lines to ensure that there is a more transparent way of administrating at all levels.

I thank Sen. Aliyu Sabi for this, and the committee on Anti Corruption and Committee on State and Local Governments must find a way of monitoring to see that this really does happen.

Let all financial institutions agree, and all of us agree that we must follow these guidelines and let the local governments be autonomous.” – Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki

5. Alarming Rate on poor quality of services in Nigeria Teaching Hospitals by Senator David Umaru

“The quality of Teaching Hospitals we had in 1971 is different from today. We need a teaching hospital commission under the ministry of health. Issues of funding, quality of services and professionalism can be resolved.”-Senator Ajayi Boroffice

“Bureaucracy and corruption is killing the health institution in Nigeria” – Sen Magnus Abe

CONSIDERATION OF BILLS – Second Reading
1. A Bill for Act to establish the Office of the Auditor-General of the Federation, provide for additional powers and functions of the office; establish the Federal Audit Service Commission; repeal the Audit Act 1956, the Public Accounts Committees Act, CAP. P35 LFN 2004, and enact the Federal Audit Service Commission and for other related matters thereto, 2019. By Senator Matthew A. Urhoghide

COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
This Bill was considered at the Committee of the Whole and referred to the Committee on Public Accounts for additional legislative input.

2. A Bill for an Act to amend the Industrial Development (Income Tax Relief) Act CAP.17, LFN, 2004 and for related matters, 2019 (SB. 734). By Senator Sabo Mohammed

COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
This Bill was considered at the Committee of the Whole and referred to the Committee on Trades and Investment.

3. A Bill for Act to Repeal the provisions of the Export (Prohibition) Act, CAP E22 LFN 2004 to allow for the exportation of certain foodstuff from Nigeria and for other related matters, 2019 (SB. 576). By Senator Abdullah Adamu

COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
This Bill was considered at the Committee of the Whole and referred to the Committee on Trades and Investment.

PRESENTATION AND CONSIDERATION OF REPORTS
1. Report of the Committee on Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) on the confirmation of the Nomination of the following persons for Appointment as Chairman and Members of the Governing Board of FERMA. By Senator Magnus Abe.

COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
Senate dissolved to the Committee of the Whole to consider the nomination of the following persons for appointment as Chairman and Members of the Governing Board of FERMA.

1.Mr. Tunde Lemo – Chairman
2.Engr. Nurudeen Abdurahaman Rafindadi – Managing Director
3.Buba Silas Abdullah – Executive Director
4.Babagana Mohammed Aji – Executive Director
5.Engr. Shah Usman Abdullah – Executive Director
6.Loretta Ngozichukwu Aniagolu – Executive Director
7.Mujaidu Stanley Dako – Executive Director
8.Vincent Oladapo Kolawale – Executive Director

Senate reverted to plenary and reported progress.

Senate confirms the nominations of Mr Tunde Lemo as Chairman of the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) and Eng. Nurudeen Abdurahaman Rafindada as Managing Director.

Buba S Abdullahi
Babagana M Aji
Eng. Usman Abdullahi
Lorreta Aniagolu
Mujaidu M Dako and Vincent Kolawole as members of the Governing Board of FERMA.

2. Report of the Committee on National Planning and Economic Affairs on the Screening of Chairman and Commissioners for the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission. By Senator Yele Omogunwa

The report is LAID.

COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
Senate dissolved to the Committee of Whole for the clause by clause consideration.

Senate reverted to plenary and reported progress.

Senate President, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki announced Senator Sabo Mohammad as Chairman and Senators Kabiru Gaya, Danjuma Goje, Jeremiah Useni, Rose Oko and Andrew Uchendu as members of the Presidential Inauguration Committee Bill.

Senate Leader moved that all other items on the order paper be stood down to another legislative day. Minority Leader seconded.

ADJOURNMENT
Plenary is adjourned to Thursday, 9th May 2019.

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