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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

[New post] Again, Senate fails to pass Peace Corps bill

anonymous informant     6:52 PM    


Senators, majorly drawn from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Tuesday, frustrated moves to adopt and pass the report of the conference committee on the establishment of
Nigerian Peace Corps (NPC).

Both chambers of the National Assembly, had last year, stepped the passage of the bill down, following sharp disagreement on certain clauses in the bill. It was subsequently referred back to the committee on Interior for further legislative action.
While the House of Representatives adopted its own report in January, 2017, the red chamber has continued to stand down further legislative actions.
When the Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Interior, Bayero Nafada moved a motion that the report of the conference committee be considered, the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, opposed it.
According to Ekweremadu, a matter relating to the constitutionality of NPC is currently in court of law where the leadership of the corps is being tried for allegedly fleecing unsuspecting job seekers.
He said it would amount to legalising illegality if the corps was allowed to be established. Senators James Manager from Delta State, Emmanuel Bwacha from Taraba State and Godswill Akpabio from Akwa Ibom, all stood against the consideration and passage of the bill.
They were supported by two APC lawmakers, Senators Kabiru Gaya from Kano State and Andy Uba from Anambra State.
The move was, however, resisted by some APC Senators who also took turns to push for the establishment of the corps.
Senators Binta Masi from Adamawa State, Ahmed Lawan from Yobe and others who spoke in favour of the establishment of the corps, said it was the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) that has been fighting the leadership of NPC, and added that the same drama took place when the Federal Road Safety Corps and Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps were to be established.
Meanwhile, Senator Akpabio has described NPC as a ponzi scheme and likened it to the now rested Mavrodi Mondial Movement (MMM).
He said the organization was operating illegally and has been involved in unlawful collection of money from applicants. He warned that passing the bill will be wrong.
In his ruling, the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, said the Bill will be stepped down, pending the resolution of certain grey areas identified in the report.
"We also need to relate with our brothers at the green chamber who have adopted this report earlier," Saraki added.
The Senate therefore, referred the Bill to the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, to consult and appropriately advice the Senate on its next legislative action.
The committee is to report back to the Senate within two weeks, when the bill is expected to be adopted for onward transmission to the President for his assent.


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