Plenary proceedings of the House of Representatives for Thursday, October 14th, 2021

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The Speaker of the House, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila presiding.

After leading the opening prayer and the National Pledge, the Speaker examined and approved the votes and proceedings for Wednesday, October 13th, 2021
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​​​​PETITIONS

1. Rep. Sergius Ogun laid a petition from Mr. Christopher Oko against the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) on his unlawful dismissal. He craved the intervention of the House to resolve the issue.

2. Rep. Shaba Ibrahim laid 3 different petitions from different complainants. The first is against the Federal Road Maintenance Agency (FERMA). The second is against the Abia State government, while the third is against the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing for unlawful trespass into private land.

The petitions were referred to the House Committee on Public Petitions
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MOTIONS OF URGENT OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE

1. Rep. Abubakar Yalleman moved a motion on the need for the ministry of health to urgently address and intervene against the ravaging cases of malaria in Jigawa state and it was seconded by Rep. Leke Abejide. Rep. Yalleman called on the federal ministry of health and its relevant agencies to as a matter of urgency employ all means to ensure the containing of the malaria surge and save the victims in Jigawa state.

The motion was voted on and adopted.

2. Rep. Leke Abejide moved a motion on the urgent need to resolve the lingering dispute between the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) technical committee on import schemes and the Nigeria Customs Services’ (NCS) e-custom organization project in Nigeria and it was seconded by Rep. Raheem Isiaka.

Rep. Abejide expressed concern at the lack of synergy between the CBN and the Nigeria Customs Service in the application of the system, especially if it is to benefit the Nigerian economy as speculated. He stated that the lingering conflict has the twin effect of costing Nigeria the loss of enormous income, as well as compromising the safety level of the Customs’ ability to intercept illicit goods and firearms. He proposed that the House Committees on Customs & Exercise, Banking and Currency as well as Finance to summon the necessary heads of the MDAs to appear before it and explain the problem to enable the House to take appropriate legislative action.

The motion was voted on and adopted.

The Speaker of the House, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila asked the Clerk of the House to immediately make the communication to aid the budget process.
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LAYING OF REPORT
The report was laid following a motion moved by Rep. John Dyegh and seconded by Rep. Abubakar Lado Suleiman
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PRESENTATION OF BILLS

1. Merchant Shipping Act (Repeal and Enactment) Bill, 2021 (HB. 1602) (Rep. Lynda Chuba Ikpeazu) – First Reading.

2. Leal Practitioners Act (Repeal and Enactment) Bill, 2021(HB. 1640) (Rep. Onofiok Luke and 25 others) – First Reading.

3. Federal University of Health Science and Technology, Kankia (Establishment) Bill, 2021 (HB. 1641) (Rep. Yahaya Abubakar Kusada) – First Reading.

4. Federal College of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Science, Isiala-Mbano, Imo State (Establishment) Bill, 2021 (HB. 1642) (Rep. Miriam Onuoha) – First Reading.

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ORDERS OF THE DAY

BILLS

1. A Bill for an Act to Amend the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University Bauchi Act, Cap. A 1, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004; and for Related Matters (HB.924) – Third Reading.

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Jimoh Olajide.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.

2. A Bill for an Act to Amend the Usman Dan Fodio University Sokoto Act, Cap. U 14, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 (HB.925) – Third Reading.

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Jimoh Olajide.
The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the clerk read the long title and it was passed.

3. A Bill for an Act to Amend the University of Maiduguri Act, Cap. U 10, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004; and for Related Matters (HB.926) – Third Reading.

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Jimoh Olajide.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.

4. A Bill for an Act to Establish the South-East Development Commission to serve as a Catalyst to Develop the Commercial Potentials of the South East, Receive and Manage Funds from Allocation of the Federation for the Rehabilitation, Reconstruction and Reparation for Houses and Lost Businesses of Victims of the Civil War, and Address any other Environmental or Developmental Challenges; and for Related Matters Matters – Third Reading.

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Jimoh Olajide.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.

5. A Bill for an Act to Establish South–West Development Commission charged with Responsibility, among others, to Receive and Manage Funds from Allocation of the Federation Account, including Donations and Gifts, the Reconstruction and Rehabilitation of Roads, Houses and other Infrastructural Damages Suffered by the Region and the Need to Tackle the Ecological Problems and any other Related Environmental or Developmental Challenges in the South West States; and for Related Matters (HB.597) – Third Reading.

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Jimoh Olajide.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.

6. A Bill for an Act to Authorise the issue from the Consolidated Revenue Fund OF THE Federation the total sum of N16,391,023,917,692 (Sixteen Trillion, Three Hundred and Ninety–One Billion, Twenty Three Million, Nine Hundred and Seventeen Thousand, Six Hundred and Ninety-Two Naira) only, of which N768,276,616,043 (Seven Hundred and Sixty–Eight Billion, Two Hundred and Seventy –Six Million, Six Hundred and Sixteen Thousand, Forty–Three Naira) only is for Statutory Transfers, N3,901,952,981,550 (Three Trillion, Nine Hundred and One Billion, Nine Hundred and Fifty–Two Million, Nine Hundred and Eighty–One Thousand, Five Hundred and Fifty Naira) only is for Debt Service, N6,829,015,483,446 (Six Trillion, Eight Hundred and Twenty–Nine Billion, Fifteen Million, Four Hundred And Eighty–Three Thousand, Four Hundred and Forty–Six Naira) only is for Recurrent (Non-Debt) Expenditure while the sum of N4,891,778,836,654 (Four Trillion, Eight Hundred and Ninety–One Billion, Seven Hundred and Seventy–Eight Million, Eight Hundred and Thirty–Six Thousand, Six Hundred and Fifty–Four Naira) only is for Contribution to the Development Fund for Capital Expenditure for the year ending 31 December, 2022. (HB. 1632) (Referred: 7/10/2021) – Second Allotted Day

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the resumption of the debate on the 2022 appropriation Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Usman Zannah.

Rep. Babajide Obanikoro in his contribution stated that there is a dire need for all MDAs of government to ensure they remain up and doing to ensure the success of the budget. He specifically called for an upward review of remuneration for the Nigeria Police to enable them effectively keep the public peace and fight criminality. He called for the revamping of the mines and steel industry for sustainable national development. Rep. Obanikoro also called for an increase in allocations for the Ministries of Health Education. He expressed worry at the continuous borrowing for non-capital expenditure.

Rep. Wale Raji praised the timely submission of the budget proposal. He also praised the budget’s provision for commitment to education and youth development. He called on the Executive arm of government to ensure appropriate funds are allocated to rail transport development as well as power generation/transmission as the speedy completion of these projects will ensure national economic growth. Rep. Raji expressed worry at the continuous revenue leakages in the finance and petroleum sectors of the economy.

Rep. Benjamin Kalu called for the timely completion of capital projects. He commended the presidency for the non-oil tax drive as this helps economic diversification and development. Rep. Kalu also commended the presidency for the allocated amounts to health and internal security. He commended the implementation of the 2020 & 2021 budgets. He called on the government to incorporate the unique impact of climate change on the different Nigerian regions. Rep. Kalu then called for scrutiny into the operations of the privatized power sector to make it more effective. He also expressed worry at the benchmarks on crude oil benchmark, daily crude oil production and the exchange rate of the Naira to the Dollar and called for enabling economic policies to address these. He expressed worry why the budget estimates have continued to increase, without the reciprocal increase to the allocation to the National Assembly which is an equal arm of government with extensive financial responsibilities.

Rep. Amadi called for policy thrusts to be a catalyst to revamp the production sector of the nation. He called for more interventions from the federal government to ensure private industries in critical sectors such as oil/gas. Rep. Amadi called on the government to continue to support private sector initiatives in oil refinery construction and maintenance.

Rep. Abubakar Fulata called for the full implementation of the budget as this would lead to the tackling of Nigeria’s critical sectors. He called for the upward review of critical benchmarks such as the price of crude oil.

Rep. Ben Mzondu stated that the recurrent expenditure in the subsequent budgets has been on the upward trend. He called for meaningful intervention in the rising national unemployment figures for teeming Nigerian youth as this directly contributes to rising insecurity. He called for the minimizing of unnecessary expenses by MDAs that contribute to an increase in the recurrent ratio as well as to increase in borrowing levels.

Rep. Ben Igbakpa called on the federal government to be careful with the application of the excess crude account. He also called for the Ministry of Science and Technology in addition to Digital Economy to get involved with skilful Nigerians in the medium and small scale enterprises for the private sector development which is is the strength of any society. Rep. Igbakpa called on Committees of the House to ensure they scale upward their oversight of MDAs to discourage revenue leakages and corrupt practices aimed at subverting the Nigerian economy.

Rep. Satomi Ahmad stated that considering the global index; the budget proposal truly reflects the unique needs of Nigerians. He called for Committees of the House to double up on efforts to ensure a more effective oversight system. Rep. Satomi called for the strengthening of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), as well as for the application of the e-customs projects which will boost their activities and ensure revenue increase and the appreciation of the Nigerian currency. He called on the CBN to partner with the Nigerian Customs Service as a developmental partner for the Nigerian economy. He called for more input into the revamping of military interventions and exercise especially in the Northeastern region of the country. He further called for a non-kinetic approach to insecurity in the region, as well as the increase of the budget for the North East Development Commission NEDC).

Rep. Yusuf Gagdi praised the stand of the National Assembly in ensuring a non-compromising stand for the parliament, for the good of Nigerians. This resolution he stated is confidence-building for the people of Nigeria. He called on Committees of the House to ensure proper scrutiny of MDAs during oversight functions to ensure what is put on paper is found to be real, practical and functioning. Rep. Gagdi called on the Federal government to ensure peace is attained and sustained in all regions of the nation for the good of the provisions of the budget proposals, as all developmental strides are almost useless devoid of peace in Nigeria.

Rep. Chinyere Igwe expressed worry that the budget proposal does not seem to be implementable when taking into consideration the shortfall of funding sources. He stated that the over-taxing of local businesses has the effect of choking already starving businesses that could lose more staff to unemployment.

Rep. Olanrewaju Oladapo stated that the allocation for growth of infrastructure has been steadily low, this he stated is sad for infrastructure development which is the crux of national development. He called on the National Assembly to use the legislative powers in the budget process to increase allocations for road construction as well as the improvement of other such infrastructure such as power. This he stated will ensure a conducive environment for businesses to thrive.

Rep. Johnson Oghuma expressed worry at the continuous dependence on borrowing instead of saving/production to fund budgets. He called on governments at all levels to ensure prudence of fund application, calling for stringent economic measures to effectively manage the value of the Naira.

Rep. Ibrahim Aliyu commended the Federal government on the implementation percentage of recent budgets. He however queried the deficits of the budgets, calling for borrowed funds to be applied to capital/infrastructure development. He also wondered why resolutions of the House on revenue leakages of MDAs of government have not been effectively tackled by the Federal government. He also wondered why the critical road for which he advocated for provisions of funds in the 2020 budget is still yet to be captured, even in the 2022 budget proposal. This road he stated is economically critical to the development of the region. Rep. Aliyu also called for a strict application of funds appropriated for the defence sector.

Rep. Unyime Idem expressed concern about the deficit value in the 2022 budget proposal, he called on agencies of government to ensure they remit revenues owed to government coffers. He called on Committees of the House to ensure strict oversight of all agencies. While commending the timely releases of recent budgets; he queried the low level of implementation by MDAs as the essence of the early passage of the budget is to stimulate the national economy, and such MDAs should not stifle the developmental efforts of the government.

Rep. Dachung Bagos while commending the federal government for its efforts; called for specialization in foreign-direct investment opportunities that abound. He called for an increase in strides of industrialization. Rep. Bagos called for more allocations for the anti-corruption agencies to aid them to create a safe business environment. He harped on the need for maintaining national security, calling for a drive to attract more direct foreign investments.

Rep. Yohanna Micah called for a depoliticized approach by members to issues of national development when scrutinizing MDAs during oversight, as many of such MDAs make light work of the efforts of the presidency aimed at national development. He called for the upgrading of critical infrastructure in Nigerian states, especially the megacities that pull high-level migration that further stretches the already over-burdened resources.

Rep. Gudaji Kazaure commended the presidency for the budget-release percentage of recent budgets. He however expressed worry at the low allocations for the ministry of health as well as Education, calling for a serious upward review, so that the two critical sectors of the economy can be further developed. Rep. Kazaure also called for more funds for job creation and skill acquisition so that the teeming youth can be duly engaged and not be used as tools for insurgency. He called on committees of the House to ensure deep scrutiny in their oversight of MDAs. Calling corruption the real bane of Nigeria; he called for the strengthening of anti-corruption agencies and policies to ensure revenue leakages and the looting of public funds ceases. Rep. Kazaure also called for the development of the agricultural sector, he called on the federal government to make it truly mechanized, this he stated is a good step in the bid to ensure a thriving and diverse economy for the nation, reducing debt ratio and unemployment.

The Deputy Speaker of the House, Rep. Ahmed Idris Wase commended members for their depoliticized contribution on the 2022 appropriation Bill and urged Committees to do a thorough job when engaging MDAs on their specific allocations.

The Bill was voted on, approved for second reading and referred to the House Committee on Appropriation, as well as other relevant Standing Committees of the House.

7. A Bill for an Act to Make Provisions for the Retirement Age for Staff of Legislative Houses in Nigeria; and for Related Matters (HB. 1473) (Rep. Mohammed Tahir Monguno) – Second Reading.

Debate
Rep. Mohammed Monguno moved for the second reading of the Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Mohammed Umar Jega.

The Bill was voted on, approved for second reading and referred to the Committee of the Whole.

8. A Bill for an Act to Establish North Central Development Commission charged with Responsibility among other things to Receive and Manage Funds from Allocation of the Federation Account for the Reconstruction and Rehabilitation of Roads, Houses and Other Infrastructural damages suffered by the Region as a result of the effects of the Communal Crisis as well as tackle the Ecological Problems and any other Related Environmental or Developmental Challenges in the North Central States; and for Related Matters (HB. 23) (Rep. Simon D Mwadkwon) – Second Reading.

Debate
Rep. Simon Mwadkwon moved for the second reading of the Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Johnson Oghuma.

The Bill was voted on, approved for second reading and referred to the Committee of the Whole.

9. A Bill for an Act to Establish North–West Development Commission charged with the responsibility, among other things, to receive and Manage Fund from Allocation of the Federation Account and International Donors for the Settlement, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Roads, Houses and Business Premises Destroyed by Multinational Crisis as well as Tackling Menace of Poverty, Literacy Level, Ecological Problems and any other Related Environmental or Developmental of Challenge in the North West State; and for Related Matters (HB. 710) (Rep. Aminu Suleiman and 78 Others) – Second Reading.

Debate
Rep. Abubakar Fulata moved for the second reading of the Bill and it was seconded by Rep. Olanrewaju Oladapo.

The Bill was voted on, approved for second reading and referred to the Committee of the Whole.

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CONSIDERATION OF REPORTS (HOUSE IN THE COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE) Rep. Ahmed Idris Wase presiding:

10. A Bill for an Act to Establish National Biotechnology Development Agency to Carry out Research, Create and Develop Public awareness in Biotechnology in order to Encourage Private Sector participation in Biotechnology Industry in Nigeria; and for Related Matters (HB. 163) (Rep. Dachung M. Bagos) – Committee of the Whole:13/11/2019.

Synopsis of the report:
Rep. Dachung Bagos stated that the Bill was passed in the preceding Assembly but didn’t receive presidential assent due to challenges in the constitution of the board. The challenges have been taken care of and urged members to positively consider it.

Summary of voting:
Clauses voted on and carried: 1-36
Clause amended and carried: long title.

11. A Bill for an Act to Establish North Central Development Commission charged with Responsibility among other things to Receive and Manage Funds from Allocation of the Federation Account for the Reconstruction and Rehabilitation of Roads, Houses and Other Infrastructural damages suffered by the Region as a result of the effects of the Communal Crisis as well as tackle the Ecological Problems and any other Related Environmental or Developmental Challenges in the North Central States; and for Related Matters (HB. 23) (Rep. Simon D Mwadkwon) – Committee of the Whole:14/10/2021.

Summary of voting:
Clauses voted on and carried: 1-30

12. A Bill for an Act to Establish North–West Development Commission charged with the responsibility, among other things, to receive and Manage Fund from Allocation of the Federation Account and International Donors for the Settlement, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Roads, Houses and Business Premises Destroyed by Multinational Crisis as well as Tackling Menace of Poverty, Literacy Level, Ecological Problems and any other Related Environmental or Developmental of Challenge in the North West State; and for Related Matters (HB. 710) (Rep. Aminu Suleiman and 78 Others) – Committee of the Whole:14/10/2021.

Summary of voting:
Clauses voted on and carried: 1-27

13. Committee on Legislative Library, Research and Documentation:
Rep. Gaza Jonathan Gbefwi:
“That the House do consider the Report of the Committee on Legislative Library, Research and Documentation on a Bill for an Act to Establish National Assembly Library Trust Fund for the Purpose of Research, Provision of Library Equipment and Related Facilities, Enhance the Research of Legislators and Staff of the National Assembly; and for Related Matters (HB.987) and approve the recommendations therein” (Laid: 12/10/2021).

Summary of voting:
Clauses voted on and carried: 1-28

14. Committee on Tertiary Education and Services:
Rep. Aminu Suleiman:
“That the House do consider the Report of the Committee on Tertiary Education and Services on a Bill for an Act to Provide for Establishment of Federal University of Education, Pankshin, Plateau State for the Promotion and Development of Teacher Education in Nigeria; and for Related Matters (HB. 686) and approve the recommendations therein” (Laid:16/2/2021).

Summary of voting:
Clauses voted on and carried: 1-29

15. Committee on Tertiary Education and Services:
Hon. Aminu Suleiman:
“That the House do consider the Report of the Committee on Tertiary Education and Services on a Bill for an Act to Establish Federal College of Education, Keana, Nassarawa State to Provide full-Time Courses, Teaching, Instruction and Training in Technology, Applied Science, Arts, Social Sciences, Humanities and Management, and to Provide for Appointment of the Provost and other Officers of the College to Carry Out the Administration and Disciplining of Students of the College; and for Related Matters (HB. 439) (Laid:8/7/2021).

Summary of voting:
Clauses voted on and carried: 1-23
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HOUSE IN PLENARY
The House reverted to plenary and adopted the report of the Committee of the Whole following a motion by the Chief Whip of the House, Rep. Mohammed Monguno and seconded by the Minority Leader, Rep. Ndudi Elumelu
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Rep. Abubakar Fulata moved a motion to suspend the relevant rules of the House so it can take the third reading of the Bills considered in the Committee of the Whole and it was seconded by Rep. Jonathan Gbwefi.
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16. A Bill for an Act to Establish National Biotechnology Development Agency to Carry out Research, Create and Develop Public awareness in Biotechnology in order to Encourage Private Sector participation in Biotechnology Industry in Nigeria; and for Related Matters (HB. 163)- Third reading

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.

17. A Bill for an Act to Establish North Central Development Commission charged with Responsibility among other things to Receive and Manage Funds from Allocation of the Federation Account for the Reconstruction and Rehabilitation of Roads, Houses and Other Infrastructural damages suffered by the Region as a result of the effects of the Communal Crisis as well as tackle the Ecological Problems and any other Related Environmental or Developmental Challenges in the North Central States; and for Related Matters (HB. 23)- Third reading

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.

18. A Bill for an Act to Establish North–West Development Commission charged with the responsibility, among other things, to receive and Manage Fund from Allocation of the Federation Account and International Donors for the Settlement, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Roads, Houses and Business Premises Destroyed by Multinational Crisis as well as Tackling Menace of Poverty, Literacy Level, Ecological Problems and any other Related Environmental or Developmental of Challenge in the North West State; and for Related Matters (HB. 710)- Third reading

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the clerk read the long title and it was passed.

19. A Bill for an Act to Establish National Assembly Library Trust Fund for the Purpose of Research, Provision of Library Equipment and Related Facilities, Enhance the Research of Legislators and Staff of the National Assembly; and for Related Matters (HB.987)- Third reading

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.

20. A Bill for an Act to Provide for Establishment of Federal University of Education, Pankshin, Plateau State for the Promotion and Development of Teacher Education in Nigeria; and for Related Matters (HB. 686)- Third reading

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.

21. Bill for an Act to Establish Federal College of Education, Keana, Nassarawa State to Provide full-Time Courses, Teaching, Instruction and Training in Technology, Applied Science, Arts, Social Sciences, Humanities and Management, and to Provide for Appointment of the Provost and other Officers of the College to Carry Out the Administration and Disciplining of Students of the College; and for Related Matters (HB. 439)-Third reading

Debate
Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved for the third reading of the Bill.

The Bill was voted on, approved for third reading, the Clerk read the long title and it was passed.
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Rep. Abubakar Fulata moved for the suspension of the relevant rules of the House to enable it to adopt the votes and proceedings of the day and it was seconded by Rep. Ibrahim Isiaka
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Rep. Benjamin Kalu moved the motion to adopt the votes and proceedings of the day and it was seconded by Rep. Yusuf Gagdi.
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Adjournment:
The House at 15:04 adjourned plenary till Tuesday, November 9th, 2021 by 11:00 following a motion for adjournment moved by Rep. Benjamin Kalu and seconded by the Minority Leader of the House, Rep. Ndudi Elumelu.

Courtesy:
Media Unit, Office of the Speaker, House of Representatives.

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