9th NASS: Abaribe, Omo-Agege, Kalu decline comment as Senate marks second Anniversary

By Our Reporter

Abuja – Senate Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, Wednesday declined to make any comment during a special session to mark the second year anniversary of the 9th Senate.

The Deputy Senate President, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege and the of the Senate, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu also did not speak when Senate President Ahmad Lawan called on them to make contribution.

While Abaribe officially signified his decision not to speak during the session, it is not clear why Omo-Agege and Kalu did not heed the Senate President’s call.

When called upon by Lawan to make his contribution after the Senate Leader, Senator Yahaya Abdullahi had spoken, Abaribe got up from his seat and said: “The Minority leader would like to decline making any comment” and thereafter took his seat.

Senate President Ahmad Lawan in his remarks, scored the 9th Senate high saying the upper chamber passed hundred of bills, legislation, including confirmation of appointments for Executive Arm of Government.

He said: “About 742 Bills were introduced during the two sessions of the Assembly, out of which 58 have been passed. 355 Bills have gone through first reading, 175 have gone through second reading and have been referred to the relevant committees for further legislative business, while 11 Bills referred by the House of Representatives for concurrence have also been passed.

“The Bills cut across all the sectors and touch most areas of needs in the lives of our citizens.”

He said one of the most significant interventions of the Senate in the economic sector was the restoration of the national to the January to December cycle.

“This measure has made the nation’s fiscal plans more predictable and boosted the confidence of local and foreign investors in our economy. It is noteworthy that for the first time under the Fourth Republic, the budget achieved 100 per cent implementation level last year.

“The restoration was achieved in partnership with the House of Representatives and with the cooperation and commitment of the Executive Arm. And it signaled the possibilities in our country when all stakeholders are working together.

 “Also noteworthy is the passage of the Deep Off-Shore and Inland Basin Production Sharing Contracts Act CAP D3 LFN 2004 (Amendment Bill, 2009). We passed this very important law to increase Nigeria’s share of revenue from its crude oil.
“Other laws that we passed that are having significant impacts on the economy include the Finance Bill 2019 (Nigeria Tax and Fiscal Law) (SB.140), which amended seven existing tax laws,” he said.

Lawan added: “In our Legislative Agenda, we had also promised to create a legal environment conducive for . We kept this promise by passing the Companies and Allied Matters Act, Cap C20 LFN 2004 (Repeal and Reenactment) Bill 2019 (SB.270).

“We also promised to break the jinx on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) and we are on the verge of doing this by finally passing the Bill this month after about 20 years of failed attempts.

“Security challenges are currently pushing our country to the edge of the precipice. Insurgency, banditry, kidnapping and attacks on public facilities are occurring daily in many parts of the country with our security forces stretched almost to their elastic limit.

“To address the emergency, we passed several resolutions as part of our legislative interventions and kept engaging with the Executive in order to achieve the desired outcome.
“Review of the 1999 constitution as amended is one of the important items of our Legislative Agenda.

“In this respect our Committee on the review of the Constitution just concluded Public Hearings in six Geo-Political Zones of the Country from which the Committee collected Memoranda from Nigerians and listened to their views. The zonal hearings were followed by a national public hearing in Abuja last week.

“The essence of this process is to consider the major issues that Nigerians feel strongly about. We believe consensus building is essential to achieve the changes. It is gladdening, however, that Nigerians have showed enthusiasm for the process.

“It is in line with this that we have set a target to consider the report of the Committee on the Amendment of 1999 Constitution before we embark on this year’s summer break in July.

“Our has shown remarkable improvement in the Fourth Republic with the cycle now virtually stable.
“In 2023, we shall have the seventh regular cycle of general elections, the longest in the history of our nation.

“Despite the progress, gaps and inadequacies have been identified in the process. The Bill seeks to address these gaps and we have committed ourselves to passing the Bill before the annual summer recess.

“The fight against corruption is critical to the progress of Nigeria and is a key point in the Agenda of the All Progressives Congress-led Federal Government of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“As part of our commitment to the success of the fight, we passed the Chartered Institute of Forensic Investigative Professionals of Nigeria (Establishment) Bill 2021 to boost institutional capacity for fighting corruption in Nigeria.

“We believe that the new institute will provide the kind of services that can nip corruption in the bud in both the public and private sectors.

“We had earlier passed the Public Procurement Act 2007 (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (SB.109); and the Public Procurement Act, 2007 (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (SB.158) also to block the avenues for corruption in the procurement process by MDAs.

“One of the developments we did not foresee at the inception of the Ninth Assembly was the outbreak of the . The disease caught the entire world by surprise and wreaked havoc on economies large and small.

“Thanks to the unity of purpose in this chamber and the National Assembly at large, however, we were able to provide the necessary intervention in support of the efforts of the Executive to combat the virus.

“To help the nation cope with the health emergency and its dire economic consequences, we promptly revised the budget which we had passed early in the previous December.”
Senate Leader Yahaya Abdullahi said the upper chamber deserve to celebrate the anniversary in view of its tremendous progress on all fronts.

He said: “Let me put it on record that the 9th Senate has made a lot of progress on all fronts and therefore deserves to mark this very great day.

“When we started, I knew that the 9th Senate is going to be significantly different and effective because it started with a position that we need to work for Nigerians by collaborating and engaging with other arms of Government.

“Our motions on security alone are 67, on economy we have about 106, on health issues we have about 62, on education we have 10.“

Senate Deputy , Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, Senators Yahaya Oloriegbe, Gabriel Suswam, Chukwuka Utazi, Olubunmi Adetunmbi, Solomon Adeola, Ibikunle Amosun, Adamu Aliero, Ajayi Boroffice, Istifanus Gyang, Stephen Odeh, Rochas Okorocha and spoke among others.

Source

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *