Plenary proceedings of the House of Representatives for Thursday, December 6, 2018. The Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara presiding.

After leading the opening prayer, the  Speaker went on to examine and approve plenary votes and proceedings for Wednesday, December 5, 2018

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PETITION

1. Hon. Rita Orji brought a petition from a constituent who complained that the death benefit of his wife is being withheld from his family. The next of kin of the deceased who worked in the Federal Medical Center Abakaliki until her death, the husband, stated that Information reaching the family suggests that the salary of the wife is still being paid to an unknown person, while the death benefit is still being denied the family. The husband is also said to be suffering from stroke at the moment. She prayed the House to intervene on behalf of the family.

The Petition was referred to the Committee on Public Petitions.

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PERSONAL EXPLANATION

Hon. Ayo Omidiran rose on the issue to extol the performance of the Super Falcons who recently won the African Women Cup of Nations an unprecedented 9 times and have continued to make the Nation and Africa proud in every  World Cup for women since the inception of the competition. The House rose up to applaud the Super Falcons.

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MATTERS OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE

1. Hon. Edward Pwajok Moved the Motion on the disruption of the sitting of the National Assembly from sitting on Tuesday, December 4, 2018 by Permanent Staff of the National Assembly due to the lack of payment of their entitlements. This he noted was due to the non-release and implementation of the 2018 Appropriation Act. He sated that the National Assembly and the Judiciary are on first-line and their funds should not be withheld for any reason. He called for the House Committee on Finance to engage the Minister of Finance to ascertain why the Judiciary and the Legislative Arms of Government would go through such financial neglect. The Motion was Voted on and Passed.

2. Hon. Sani Zorro Moved the Motion on the security alignment of Nigeria’s defense policy. He noted that the fact that the House has invested quite a large amount of time deliberating on security issues bedeviling the nation, the lack of commitment being exhibited in the body language of the Executive in dealing with the problem is unfortunate.The Leader of the House, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila queried whether it was not disclosing sensitive information for the Motion to be debated on the open Floor of the House. The Motion was Voted on, Passed for debate, but referred to the Committee on Rules and Business to ascertain if the contents can be debated on the open Floor of the House.

3. Hon. Kingsley Chinda Moved the Motion on the clarification on the way the Army invaded the training ground of the Rivers State Neighborhood Safety Corp, branding them a militia group. The Corp members he stated had been legally and duly employed by the Rivers State Government. He reminded the House that other States have such legally constituted groups aimed at strengthening community security without interruption from the Nigeria Army or Police, he wondered why Rivers State was being singled out for this intimidation. The Corp he stated had the twin advantages of helping to provide security as well as providing job opportunities to the teeming youth in Rivers State. He called for the strong condemnation of the invasion and subsequent release of the arrested participants to reverse the situation. Hon. Chinda also called for the House Committee on Army to investigate the reasons behind the issue. As an Investigative Motion it was Voted on and Passed as Amended to strike out the Prayer to strike out the terms ‘condemn the Army’ and the reversal of the arrests until the investigation is concluded.

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PRESENTATION OF BILLS

 

1. Nigerian Law Reform Commission Act (Repeal and Re-Enactment) Bill, 2018 (Senate) (HB. 1577) – First Reading.

 

2. Chartered Institute of Corporate Monitoring and Coaching Bill, 2018 (HB. 1574) (Hon. Zakariya’u M. Galadima) – First Reading.

 

3. Chartered Institute of Professional Secretarial Staff of Nigeria Bill, 2018 (HB. 1575) (Hon. Ochiglegor Idagbo) – First Reading.

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PRESENTATION OF REPORT

 

Committee on Public Service Matters

Hon. Gogo Bright Tamuno:

“That the House do receive the Report of the Committee on Public Service Matters on Implementation of the New Conditions of Service for Staff of the National Assembly Service Pursuant to Order Eighteen,  Rule 83(2)(f) of the Standing Orders of the House of Representatives”

 

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ORDERS OF THE DAY

 

BILLS

1. A Bill for an Act to Repeal the Companies and Allied Matters Act, Cap. C20,   Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and Enact the Companies and Allied Matters Bill to provide for Incorporation of Companies, Limited Liability Partnership, Limited Partnerships, Registration of Business Names together with Incorporation of Trustees of certain Communities, Bodies, Associations; and for Related Matters (HB.1576) (Senate) (Leader) – Second Reading.

The Bill was Stepped down for further consideration.

 

2. A Bill for an Act to Establish the National Ear Care Centre, Kaduna for the Prevention, Diagnosis and Treatment of Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Diseases, Co-ordination of Research in Ear, Nose and Throat Challenges, Training of Specialists in Ear, Nose and Throat; and for Related Matters (HB. 1522) (Hon. Mohammad Usman) – Second Reading.

Debate

Hon. Usman Moved for the Second Reading of the Bill and it was Seconded by Hon. Musa Shehu. In leading the debate, Hon. Usman stated that the Center is already in existence and has been functioning, but it lacks a Legal framework for its operations. Considering the impact the center has had on the treatment of Nigerians from all works of life, it is important for the center to have the required legal backing for training of professionals and continued diagnosis and treatment of ear, nose and throat illnesses. The Bill was Voted on, Passed for Second Reading and referred to the Committee on Health Institutions.

 

3. A Bill for an Act to Repeal the Citizenship and Leadership Training Centre Act, Cap. C12, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and Enact the National Centre for Citizenship and Leadership Training; and for Related Matters (HB. 1354) (Hon. Segun Adekola) – Second Reading.

 

Consideration of the Bill Stepped down due to the absence of its Sponsor.

4. A Bill for an Act to Establish the Nigerian Shoreline Development and Protection Agency charged with Responsibility for Management and Administration of Sea Waves on the Nation’s Coastland; and for Related Matters (HB. 1508) (Hon. Julius Pondi) – Second Reading.

Debate

Hon. Pondi Moved for the Second Reading of the Bill and it was Seconded by Hon. Uzoma Abonta. In leading the debate, Hon. Pondi pointed out  that as an indigene of a coastal community, he deeply recognized the need to protect the shore lines of such coastal areas from being totally eroded by the sea. He called for this protection as is being done in other countries. Hon. Agbonayinma Johnson in contributing to the Bill stated that it is the duty of a responsible government to be accountable for the lives and properties to be secured in an environment that will ensure safety and prosperity of its citizenry of all regions within its territory. Hon. Nkem Abonta stated that in the last 10 years, 10 nautical miles inland of coastal regions have been lost by erosion surge of the sea and only a serious effort can stop this enormous of consequence of climate change. He lamented the situation as needing urgent attention alongside those suffering desert encroachment and asked for speedy acceleration of the Bill so that it can become Law before the elapse of the current regime. The Bill was Voted on, Passed for Second Reading and referred to the Committee on Environment and Habitat.

 

5. A Bill for an Act to Establish Federal University of Agriculture, Dambatta to make Comprehensive Provisions for its due Management and Administration; and for Related Matters (HB. 1566) (Hon. Badamasi Ayuba) – Second Reading.

Debate

Hon. Ayuba Moved for the Second Reading of the Bill and it was Seconded by Hon. Sani Bala. In leading the debate, Hon. Ayuba stated that the Bill seeks the establishment of the institution to ensure equity of the spread of such institutions and ensure the advancement of learning in agriculture for Nigerians residing in the region. He reminded Members that due to the urgent need to diversify the economy of the nation, agricultural development cannot be over emphasized. The Bill was Voted on, Passed for Second Reading and referred to the Committee on Tertiary Education and Services.

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MOTIONS

 

6.​ Discharge of Committees from Referrals on Bills, Pursuant to Order Seventeen, Rule 3 (1) (g) of the Standing Orders of the House of Representatives:

Hon. Edward Gyang Pwajok:

 

The House:

 

Notes that the following Bills were read a Second time separately between 2016 and 2017 and referred to respective Committees for further legislative actions:

 

 

S/N

Title of Bill

 

Date

Committee

1.

National Gas Resources Development Agency Bill, 2016 (HB. 607)

16/11/2016

Gas Resources

 

2.

Acts Authentication Act (Amendment) Bill, 2016 (HB. 646)

22/11/2016

Justice

3.

Administrative Staff College of Nigeria Act (Amendment) Bill, 2016 (HB. 666)

24/11/2016

Governmental Affairs

 

4.

National Fitness Day Bill, 2016 (HB. 704)

29/11/2016

Sports

 

5.

Nigerian Institute of Translators and Interpreters Bill, 2016 (HB. 829)

3/3/2016

Commerce

6.

Nigerian Agency for Foreign Assistance Bill, 2015 (HB. 24)

1/12/2016

Foreign Affairs

7.

Pre-Shipment Inspection of Imports Act (Amendment) Bill, 2016 (HB. 657)

24/11/2016

Commerce

 

8.

Free Trade Zone Bill, 2015  (HB. 37)

14/12/2016

Commerce

9.

Nigerian Airspace Management Agency Act (Amendment) Bill, 2016 (HB. 787)

15/12/2016

Aviation

10.

Desecration of Sanctity of Human Life and Dead Body (Prohibition) Bill, 2016 (HB. 778)

17/1/2017

Human Rights

 

11.

Export (Prohibition) Act (Repeal) Bill, 2016 (HB. 671)

18/1/2017

Agricultural Production and Services

 

12.

Piers Act (Amendment) Bill, 2016 (HB. 678)

18/1/2017

Ports, Harbours and Waterways

 

13.

Adequate Parking Spaces for Building meant for Public Use Bill, 2016 (HB. 783)

19/1/2017

Housing and Urban Development and Regional Planning

 

14.

National Industrial Court Act (Amendment) Bill, 2016 (HB. 860)

24/1/2017

Federal Judiciary

15.

Federal Character Commission Act (Amendment) Bill, 2016 (HBs. 832 and 885)

26/1/2017

Federal Character

 

 

Aware that the Committees are yet to present Reports on the Bills, contrary to the provisions of Order Seventeen, Rule 3 (1) (g) of the Standing Orders of the House of Representatives, to wit:

 

“Any matter referred to any Committee shall be treated within 30 days otherwise the Committee shall stand discharged after 60 days and the matter committed to the Committee of the Whole for consideration”;

 

Resolves to:

 

Discharge the Committees of the above mentioned Bills and commit same to the Committee of the Whole for consideration.

 

Debate

Hon. Pwajok Moved the Motion on the discharge from individual responsibility of the above Committees. The Motion was Voted on, Passed and referred to the Committee of The Whole.

 

7.​ Need to Investigate the Cause of the Incessant Killings of Young Female Students of Delta State University, Abraka, Delta State:

Hon. Lovette Ederin Idisi:

 

The House:

 

Notes the incessant killings of female students of Delta State University, Abraka, Delta State by men suspected to be ritual Killers styled “Yahoo boys”;

Saddened at the death of one Miss Elozino Ogege, a 300 Level student of the Department of Mass Communications of Delta State University, Abraka, who was recently murdered by the callous killers;

Disturbed that despite the reoccurrence of the killings, security in the area has remained casual with no efforts to beef it up in order to check the killings and protect the vulnerable citizens;

Informed that the killings are specifically targeted at the female folks whose used sanitary pads and underwear are allegedly needed for ritual purposes;

Concerned that if drastic steps are not urgently taken, the killings could continue unabated to the extent that the successes recorded in the Delta State University could be eroded and the university may become unattractive to prospective students;

Resolves to:

(i) Observe a minute silence in honour of Late Miss Elozino Ogege;

 

(ii) Condemn the acts in their entirety and mandate the Committee on Police Affairs to interface with the Inspector–General of Police and the Delta State Commissioner of Police with a view to taking necessary and effective measures to arrest the deplorable situation.

Debate

Hon. Lovette Moved the Motion and it was Seconded by Hon. Solomon Mahren. As an Investigative Motion it was Voted on and Passed.

 

8.​ Need to Abolish the Practice of Money–Women in Bechev Community, Obanliku Local Government Area of Cross River State:

Hon. Ochiglegor Idagbo:

 

The House:

 

Notes that the Bechev Community in Cross River State, consisting of over 17 villages, engages in an age-long tradition where a young girl known as ‘money woman’ is sold out in marriage to pay a debt incurred by her relatives long before she was born;

 

Also notes that the ‘money woman’ custom is practiced openly among the Bechev people in Obanliku Local Government Area of Cross River State as a thing of pride and accomplishment as there is hardly any family among the Bechev people without a ‘money woman’;

 

Worried that a ‘money woman’ is not allowed the right to education and if she gives birth to a baby girl, the baby will be sold out without her consent;

 

Also worried that when a husband of a ‘money woman’ dies, the next of kin of her husband marries her and if she dies without giving birth, her parents are obliged to bring a replacement as demanded by the custom;

 

Aware that this Bechev custom is repugnant to natural justice, equity and good conscience and constitutes slavery in the 21st Century;

 

Resolves to:

 

Urge the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) to wade into the issue of ‘money woman’ in Bechev Community in Obanliku Local Government Area of Cross River State with a view to abolishing the obnoxious practice.

Item stepped down by leave of the House due to the absence of its Mover.

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CONSIDERATION OF REPORTS (HOUSE IN THE COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE) Rt. Hon. Yussuff Lasun Presiding

 

9.​ That the House do Consider the Report of the Ad-Hoc Committee on Ajaokuta Steel Company Ltd on failure of the Ajaokuta Steel Company to Commence Operations since Inception and approve the recommendations (HR.78/2018) (Laid: 22/11/2018):

(i) That the Federal Government should demonstrate a strong political will, just like the United States President did recently in steel sector, to resuscitate the Ajaokuta Integrated Steel plant by direct sourcing and disbursement of about $2b needed to revamp and complete the 2% external aspects of the Integrated project (to wit, revival of Ajaokuta Steel Company and the National Iron Ore Manufacturing Company, Itakpe, completing the various external rail track system and access roads linkages; the development and optimal functioning of the various mining sites for steady supply of raw materials to guarantee an uninterrupted steel production when the blast furnace would be started.);

 

(ii) that the Federal Government should, as a matter of national interest and security, annul and terminate the recent reconcession agreement entered into with Global Infrastructure Nigeria Ltd (GINL) of 1st August 2016, as there is still an extant Federal Government indictment against the company (GINL).

 

(iii) that the Federal Government should cease from any further thought of concessioning and/or reconcessioning of the Nigerian Steel Companies as Nigeria has capable hands under the services of the Federal Republic to manage the integrated plants when properly funded;

 

(iiii) that the Federal Government should revive relations with the original builders of the Company (TPE of Russia) towards wooing them back to continue and complete the good work they started alongside the current Management Team of indigenous Sole Administrators who have shown expertise and practical knowledge in the integrated steel plants management and production;

 

 

(v) that since it is known that most of the Abacha loot was gotten from the debt by back deal involving Ajaokuta, then the recovered loots which are still flowing into Nigeria should be used to supplement the funding of the completion of the Ajaokuta integrated steel plant;

 

(vi) that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) should heed the Presidential directive of late President Yaradua in 2008, to prosecute all the collaborators of Global Infrastructures Nigeria Ltd as economic saboteurs;

 

(vii) that both the Company, Global Infrastructures Nigeria Ltd and all indicted local collaborators should be made to pay damages to the host communities that suffered loss of lives when the Company used brutal force against the workers (most of whom were community youths) who tried to stop the Company from stripping and vandalizing the assets of the concessioned plants;

 

(viii) that the Company, Global Infrastructures Nigeria Ltd and its associates be banned from further doing any business in Nigeria as its track record has been marred by duplicity and fraud;

 

(ix) that accelerated legislative work must be done by both Chambers of the National Assembly to ensure that both the Ajaokuta Steel Company and the National Iron Ore Manufacturing Company, Itakpe, are removed from the Privatization List;

Synopsis of the Report:

Hon. Idris Ahmed stated that The Committee sat to find the way forward on the bid to ensure the Adjaokuta Steel Complex begins to function optimally in order to ensure the economic development of Nigeria.

Summary of Voting:

Recommendations Voted on and Aproved: 1-9

 

10.​ A Bill for an Act to Repeal the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation Act, Cap. N137, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and Enact the Nigerian Tourism Development Authority Bill; and for Related Matters (HB. 1212) (Committee of the Whole: 21/11/2018)

Synopsis of the Report:

Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila stated that the Bill is one emanating from the Concurrence Committee and has been been thoroughly looked at, he urged the House to pass it.

Summary of Voting:

Clauses Voted on and Carried: 1-43

 

11.​ A Bill for an Act to Provide for Establishment of Federal University of Education, Zaria; and for Related Matters (HB. 1536) (Senate) (Leader) – (Committee of the Whole: 24/10/2018).

Synopsis of the Report:

Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila stated that the Bill seeks an upgrade, it is also one seeking concurrence and urged the Members to pass it.

Summary of Voting:

Clauses Voted on Carried:1-29

 

12.​ A Bill for an Act to Provide for Establishment of Adeyemi Federal University of Education, Ondo; and for Related Matters (HB. 1539) – (Senate) (Leader) – (Committee of the Whole: 24/10/2018).

Synopsis of the Report:

Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila stated that the Bill seeks an upgrade, it is also one seeking concurrence and urged the Members to pass it.

Summary of Voting:

Clauses Voted on Carried:1-29

 

13.​ A Bill for an Act to Provide for Establishment of Alvan Ikoku Federal University of Education, Owerri; and for Related Matters (HB. 1537) (Senate) (Leader) – (Committee of the Whole: 8/11/2018).

Synopsis of the Report:

Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila stated that the Bill seeks an upgrade and is also one seeking concurrence and urged the Members to pass it.

Summary of Voting:

Clauses Voted on Carried:1-29

 

14.​ A Bill for an Act to Amend the Public Holidays Act, Cap. P40, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 to bring the Act in tandem with the current realities and exigencies of the modern times and to declare June, 12 as Democracy Day in Nigeria and for Related Matters (HBs. 918 and 1529) ( Hon. Edward Gyang Pwajok and Hon. Kayode Oladele) (Committee of the Whole: 22/11/2018).

Synopsis of the Report:

Hon. Pwajok stated that the Bill had been Passed by the House and seeks to Amend the 5th Schedule to substitute the date of May 29 to June 12.

Summary of Voting:

Clauses Voted on and Carried: Relevant Schedule

 

15.​ A Bill for an Act to Amend the Casino Taxation Act, Cap. C3, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 by Extending the Operation of the Act beyond Lagos and for Related Matters (HB. 365) (Hon. Edward Gyang Pwajok) – (Committee of the Whole: 27/11/2018).

Synopsis of the Report:

Hon. Pwajok stated that the Report seeks to extend the application of the regulation of casinos to other States of the nation, as it is now only in effect in Lagos State. It also seeks to make it in tandem with the existing realities. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila reminded the House that casino is prohibited in predominantly Islamic States. Hon. Yussuff Lasun reminded Hon. Gbajabiamila that casinos are mostly sited in hotels at their behest, but the hoteliers should be sensitive to their religious environments.

Summary of Voting:

Clauses Voted on Carried: 1-6

 

16.​ A Bill for an Act to Repeal the National Agricultural Seeds Act, Cap. N5, LFN, 2004 and Re-enact the National Agricultural Seeds Council Bill, 2016 and for Related Matters (HB. 472) (Committee of the Whole: 27/11/2018).

Synopsis of the Report:

Hon. Edward Pwajok stated that the Bill had been originally Passed by both Chambers of the Legislature and conveyed to the President for assent, but the President declined assent. The Bill is therefore to address the concern made by Mr. President

Summary of Voting:

Clause Voted on and Passed as Amended: 4

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HOUSE IN PLENARY

The House Adopted Votes and Proceedings of the Committee of the Whole

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Adjournment:

The House adjourned Plenary till Tuesday, December 11, 2018 by 11:00 Am

Courtesy:

Media Unit, Office of the Honourable Speaker, House of Representatives.

 

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