PROCEEDINGS OF THE NIGERIAN SENATE OF Tuesday, 24th January, 2023

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

Senate President Ahmad Lawan led the Principal Officers into the Chamber, took the official prayers and began the day’s proceedings at 11:02am.

VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS
Senator Bello Mandiya moved for the adoption of the Votes and Proceedings of Wednesday, 18th January, 2023.

Senator Christopher Ekpeyong seconded.

EXECUTIVE COMMUNICATION
Senate President Ahmad Lawan read three letters from President Muhammadu Buhari on:

1. Confirmation of Appointment of IGP Solomon Arase (Rtd) as Chairman, Police Service Commission;

2. Confirmation of Appointment of Dr. Mahmud Isa from Kebbi State (Renewal) and Dr. Ali from Ondo State (New Appointment) as Resident Electoral Commissioners for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC); and

3. Confirmation of Appointment of five members of Code of Conduct Bureau

PETITIONS
Senator Ayo Akinyelure presented three (3) petitions from the Office of the President of the Senate:

1. Petition from Stanley Okonmah against the Director of Finance and Appropriation, FMC – Keffi – Mrs Nalon Blessing Okonufa and the immediate past DFA – Dr. Samuel Adewale Adegoke for high level of financial infractions, corruption nepotism and gross abuse of office between 2017 and 2020 and need for urgent attention

2. Petition from Abayomi Asorobi Esq on behalf of Ecobank Nigeria Plc and Matt-Emmans International Ventures Limited against Krogger Investment Limited and Nigeria Television Authority on petition for Senate intervention for the payment of the sum of N8,483,334,731.48 (Eight Bilion, Four Hundred and Eighty Three Million, Three Hundred and Thirty Four Thousand, Seven Hundred and Thirty Four Thousand, Seven Hundred and Thirty One Naira, Forty Eight Kobo) only to Ecobank Nigeria Plc as per indemnity in respect of Nigerian Television Authority’s indebtedness

3. Petition from Tajudeen Ogunyemi on behalf of Lieutenant S. E. Dakare against the Nigerian Army on petition brought pursuant to Section 154 of the Armed Forces Act CAP A20 LFN 2004 (as amended) for the review of general Court Martial findings and award after confirmation in the twins cases of Nigerian Army Vs Lt. S. E. Dakare held at HQ 2 Division, Nigerian Army, Adekunle Fajuyi Cantonment, Ibadan, Oyo State.

Petitions were laid and referred to the Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions to report back within four weeks.

POINT OF ORDER
1. Senator Sadiq Umar cited Order 41 and 51 to seek the leave of the Senate to present a motion on the extension of old Naira notes from January 31st to July 31st.

Senate resolved:

i. That the Central Bank of Nigeria should immediately extend the use of the old notes by six months from January 31st to July 31st 2023 with immediate effect;

ii. That the CBN Governor should compel banks to open an exchange window where people who don’t have bank account can exchange their old notes with the new notes.

“In most parts of Nigeria, there are no banks and our people transact in cash most often than not. There is no doubt that we must have a policy of inclusion in getting our people who have no banks available to them and the CBN can have a special programme for that. We must have policies by the CBN to ensure that we have branches of banks established more in our rural areas.” – Senate President Ahmad Lawan

2. Senator Ayo Akinyelure cited Order 41 and 51 to seek the leave of the Senate to move a motion urging the federal government through the Bureau of Public Enterprise to halt the sale and disposition of publlic asset- the Ondo State Chocolate Industry Idanre, Ondo Central Senatorial District under any guise by the Ondo State Government.

Senate resolved to:
i. Mandate the Federal Government through the Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE) to as matter of urgency halt the sale of the Ondo State Chocolate Factory Idanre and launch a full scale investigation.

ii. Mandate the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate the reasons why this Cocoa Factory was deliberately not put to use and stop any purported sale of the factory to cronies in view of huge investment of over N9 billion of tax payers’ monies spent on the project by Ondo State Government of Nigeria.

PRESENTATION OF BILLS FOR FIRST READING
1. Federal College of Agriculture (Technical) Ogbombiri, Bayelsa State (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (HB. 1731) by Senate Leader, Senator Ibrahim Gobir

Federal College of Agriculture (Technical) Ogbombiri, Bayelsa State (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (HB. 1731) was read the First Time

2. Federal College of Agriculture (Technical) Enugwu-Ukwu (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (HB. 1261) by Senate Leader, Senator Ibrahim Gobir

Federal College of Agriculture (Technical) Enugwu-Ukwu (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (HB. 1261) was read the First Time.

3. Service Delivery and Compliance (SERVICOM) Bill, 2023 (HB. 558) by Senate Leader, Senator Ibrahim Gobir

Service Delivery and Compliance (SERVICOM) Bill, 2023 (HB. 558) was read the First Time

4. Federal Medical Centre Okigwe (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 1100) by Senator Frank Ibezim

Federal Medical Centre Okigwe (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 1100) was read the First Time

5. Information and Communication Technology Onitsha (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 1101) by Senator Stella Oduah

Information and Communication Technology Onitsha (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 1101) was read the First Time.

EXECUTIVE COMMUNICATION
Confirmation of the Nomination of the following persons for Appointment as Member of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) by Senate Leader, Senator Ibrahim Gobir

Senate Leader, Senator Ibrahim Gobir moved that the Senate do consider the request of Mr. President C-in-C on the confirmation of the nomination of the following persons for appointment as Member of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) in accordance with the provision of Section 3(3) and (7) of the Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Act, 2000.

i. Justice Adamu Bello (Rtd) – North West – Jigawa State

ii. Hanatu Muhammed – North West – Katsina State

iii. Mrs Olubukola Balogun (Rtd) – South West – Lagos State

iv. Barr. Obiora Samuel – South East – Anambra State

v. Dr. Abdullahi Saidu – North Central – Niger State

vi. Prince Dauda Yahaya – North Central – Nasarawa State

vii. Dr. Grace Chinyere – South South – Delta State

Minority Leader seconded.

The request of Mr. President C-in-C was referred to the Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes to report back within one week

MOTION FOR RE-COMMITAL
1. Federal Medical Centre Igboora Bill, 2023

Senate rescind its decision on the Bills as passed and re-commit same to the Committee of the Whole for re-consideration and passage.

Senate resolved into Committee of the Whole to consider the report.

Senate reverted to Plenary to report Progress.

The Senate in Committee of the Whole and Plenary considered Federal Medical Centre Igboora Bill, 2023 and approved Clauses 1-2 as recommended, Explanatory Memorandum as recommended, Short and Long Title as recommended.

Federal Medical Centre Igboora Bill, 2023 was read the Third Time and PASSED!

MOTION
1. Passage of Constitution (Fifth) Alteration Bills, 2023 by Deputy Senate President Ovie Omo-Agege and 65 other Senators.
Senator Betty Apiafi seconded.

Senate Resolved to:
i. Direct the Clerk to the National Assembly to transmit the 35 Bills that have so far met the requirements of the provision of section 9(2) of the Constitution, to Mr. President, Commander-in- Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federation for assent in line with the provisions of the Acts Authentication Act; and

ii. Urge the following State Houses of Assembly -Gombe, Jigawa, Kebbi, Kwara, Oyo, Plateau, Sokoto, Taraba, Zamfara; that are yet to forward their resolution on the Bills to do so in fulfilment of their Constitutionally imposed obligation to the Constitution amendment process.

CONSIDERATION OF BILLS FOR SECOND READING
1. A Bill for an Act to Establish the Nigeria Medical Research Council as an autonomous Council to carryout medical research in all its ramifications and to make provisions for the transfer of assets and liabilities of the National Institute of Medical Research established under the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure Act of 1992 and for related matters, 2023 (SB. 1093) by Senator Ibrahim Oloriegbe

The Bill was read the Second Time and referred to the Committee on Health to report back within four weeks.

2. A Bill for an Act to Establish the Auctioneers Registration Council of Nigeria for the purpose of regulating and monitoring the business and practice of auctioneers and auctioneering in Nigeria, and for related matters, 2023 (SB. 172) by Senator Ali Ndume

Senator Saidu Ahmed Alkali seconded.

The Bill was read the Second Time and referred to the Committee on Establishment and Public Service to report back within four weeks.

3. A Bill for an Act to Establish the Project development Agency charged with the broad function of generating and catalyzing industrialization by carrying out industrial research from the laboratory stage to the pilot plan stage, and by rendering consultancy services to Governments, industry and individuals; and for other related matters, 2023 (SB. 1097) by Senator Frank Ibezim

Senator Suleiman Abdu Kwari seconded.

The Bill was read the Second Time and referred to the Committee on Science and Technology to report back within four weeks.

PRESENTATION AND CONSIDERATION OF REPORTS
1. Report of the Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes
Confirmation of the Nomination of the Nomination of the following persons for Appointment as Member of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC) by Senator Suleiman Abdu Kwari

Senator Suleiman Abdu Kwari moved that the Senate do receive and consider the report of the Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes on the screening of the Nomination of the Nomination of the following persons for Appointment as Member of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC)

i. Justice Adamu Bello (Rtd) – North West – Jigawa State
ii. Hanatu Muhammed – North West – Katsina State
iii. Mrs Olubukola Balogun (Rtd) – South West – Lagos State
iv. Barr. Obiora Samuel – South East – Anambra State
v. Dr. Abdullahi Saidu – North Central – Niger State
vi. Prince Dauda Yahaya – North Central – Nasarawa State
vii. Dr. Grace Chinyere – South South – Delta State

Senator Ali Ndume seconded.

Senator Suleiman Abdu Kwari laid and presented the report.

“The report is very clear and straight to the point. These nominees have been screened and from the report before us, they have done very well in their various offices. Therefore, I don’t think we need to waste more time. I will urge the Senate to give its nod for the confirmation of these nominees for another term.” – Senator Barau Jibrin

“Let me say I am fully in support of the recommendations of the Committee. However, with respect to nomination No 3., we need to be sure that we are actually confirming the recommendation of someone who is alive. I saw that even the letter that came from the Presidency also carried the name as Mrs Olubukola Balogun (Rtd). I believe it is something that carries our attention so we need to be assure that this person is alive. Regarding nominee No. 2. – Hanatu Muhammed, the records here show that she was actually born 1992 and have already spent one term. I just want to say that it is important that when these appointments especially into boards are being made, maturity should be taken into consideration.” – Senator Opeyemi Bamidele

Senate resolved into Committee of the Whole to consider the report.

Senate reverted to Plenary to report progress.

The Nomination of Justice Adamu Bello (Rtd) from Jigawa State representing North West was CONFIRMED as member of Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC)

The Nomination of Hanatu Muhammed from Katsina State representing North West was CONFIRMED as member of Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC)

The Nomination of Mrs Olubukola Balogun (Rtd) from Lagos State representing South West was CONFIRMED as member of Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC)

The Nomination of Barr Obiora Samuel from Anambra State representing South East was CONFIRMED as member of Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC)

The Nomination of Dr. Abdullahi Saidu from Niger State representing North Central was CONFIRMED as member of Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC)

The Nomination of Prince Dauda Yahaya from Nasarawa State representing North Central was CONFIRMED as member of Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC)

The Nomination of Dr. Grace Chinyere from Delta State representing South South was CONFIRMED as member of Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC)

2. Report of the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters
Senator Opeyemi Bamidele moved that the Senate do receive and consider the report of the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters on:

i. Federal High Court Act, Cap F12 LFN 2004 (Amendment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 745)

ii. Franchising (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 969)

Senator Adetokunbo Abiru seconded.

Senator Opeyemi Bamidele laid and presented the two reports.

Senate resolved into Committee of the Whole to consider the two reports.

Senate reverted to Plenary to report progress.

i. Federal High Court Act, Cap F12 LFN 2004 (Amendment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 745)

The Senate in Committee of the Whole and Plenary considered Federal High Court Act, Cap F12 LFN 2004 (Amendment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 745) and approved Clauses 1-3 as recommended, Short and Long Titles as recommended, Explanatory Memorandum as recommended.

Federal High Court Act, Cap F12 LFN 2004 (Amendment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 745) was read the Third Time and PASSED

ii. Franchising (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 969)

The Senate in Committee of the Whole and Plenary considered Franchising (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 969) and approved Clauses 1-20 as recommended, Interpretation as recommended, Short and Long Titles as recommended, Explanatory Memorandum as recommended.

Franchising (Establishment) Bill, 2023 (SB. 969) was read the Third Time and PASSED

3. Report of the Committee on Trade and Investment
2022 Oversight visit to Lagos International Trade Fair Complex by Senator Ahmed Saidu Alkali

Senator Ahmed Saidu Alkali moved that the Senate do receive and consider the report of the Committee on Trade and Investment on the 2022 Oversight visit to Lagos International Trade Fair Complex.

Senator Frank Ibezim seconded.

Senator Ahmed Saidu Alkali laid and presented the report.

Senate approved the recommendations of the report as amended.

ADJOURNMENT
Senate Leader, Senator Ibrahim Gobir moved that other items on the Order Paper be stood down till another legislative day.

Minority Leader seconded.

Plenary was adjourned to Wednesday, 25th January, 2023.

#GavelBangs
#TodayInSenatePlenary

Signed
New Media Unit
Office of the President of the Senate
Federal Republic of Nigeria

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