NASS

SENATE PASSES MOTIONS ON THE TENURE OF NDDC BOARD, FRAUD IN POWER SECTOR & NINE BILLS FOR SECOND READING


The plenary session of the Senate on Wednesday, November 8, 2017 witnessed the consideration and passage of two Motions and nine Bills for second reading. The session was presided over by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki. Among the Motions deliberated upon and accorded legislative approval include:
1) The illegal extension of the tenure of the Board of Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), sponsored by Sen. Emmanuel Paulker (Bayelsa Central).

According to Sen. Paulker, the Senate observed that the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) was established to tackle developmental issues affecting the Niger Delta. The Commission consist of a Board made up of members drawn from the States of Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross Rivers, Delta, Edo, Imo, Ondo and Rivers.
Sen. Paulker noted that Section 4 of the NDDC Act states that the Office of the Chairman shall rotate among members States of the Commission in alphabetical order. Accordingly, the NDDC Board headed by Senator Victor Ndoma Egba SAN was appointed by 
President Muhammadu Buhari to replace the one headed by Sen. Bassey Henshaw. 

The law-maker further observed that Section 5 (3) of the NDDC Act dictates that the Board headed by Sen. Ndoma Egba, serves out the remainder of the term of the Board chaired by Sen. Henshaw which will terminate in December, 2017.Contrary to Section 5 (3) of the Act, the tenure of the present Board of the Commission has been illegally extended to four years by the government. The Motion scaled through with a single resolution below:
i) Mandate the Senate Committee on Niger Delta to liaise with the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha and come up with resolution on the matter.
2) Monumental Fraud in the Power Sector, sponsored by Sen. Dino Melaye (Kogi West).
Sen. Melaye noted that sometimes in July, 2013, the Federal Government raised a total sum of $1 billion through the Eurobond issue; the Senate is also aware that the sum of $350 million was taken by the Federal Government out of the proceeds of the July, 2013 Eurobond issue and released to Nigeria Electricity Bulk Trading Company (NBET) Plc as shareholder contribution shore up its capitalization.

The Senate was alarmed by the desperate attempt by the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing to retrieve this fund ($350 million) and divert same to fund the so called Fast Power Projects which the Ministry has already spent $35 million of public funds not appropriated for by the National Assembly which raise a lot of questions that include: 
a) Who were the consultants and how were they procured? 
b) Was there observance of due process in awarding the consultancy of $6 million and in paying General Electric $29 million for turbines? 
c) Why is the transaction cloaked in secrecy? 
d) What is the true value of Afam Fast Power plant? 
e) Why is the Ministry engaged in constructing new power plant while government has several idle plants that is seeking buyers for? 
f) Why is the Ministry that is supposed to be making policies, dabbling into constructing new power plants that we have all agreed is better handled by the private sector? The Motion sailed through with two prayers below:

i) Mandate the Senate Committees on Power and Public Accounts to invite the Minister of Power, Works and Housing to render a detailed account in terms of public funds spent on the Fast Power Projects (Afam Fast Power plant in particular); evidence of feasibility study indicating the viability of the projects, and requisite appropriation by the National Assembly as required by the Constitution; and the controversial Presidential approval; investigate the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) and the Nigerian Electricity Bulk Trading Company (NBET) etc. to generally establish the status of the funds.
ii) Mandate the Committee on Public Accounts to ascertain the where about of the balance of $650 million that is in custody of NSIA.

Meanwhile, the Red Chamber has debated and passed for second reading the following legislation:
1) A Bill for an Act to establish the Federal Polytechnic, Kabo, Kano State to provide for full time courses in technology, applied Science Management and other fields of studies and to make provision for general administration of the Polytechnic and for other related matters, 2017 (S.B. 407), sponsored by Sen. Barau Jibrin (Kano North). The Bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Tertiary Education and TETFUND, to report back in four weeks.

2) A Bill for an Act to establish the Federal Polytechnic, Ukana, Akwa Ibom State to provide for full time courses in technology, Applied Science Management and other Fields of Studies and to make provision for the general administration of such Polytechnic  and for other related matters connected therewith, 2017 (S.B. 434), sponsored by Sen. Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom North-West). The legislation has been referred to the Senate Committee on Tertiary Education and TETFUND, to report back in four weeks.

3) A Bill for an Act to establish the Federal College of Education, Omuma, Imo State and for matters connected therewith, 2017 (S.B. 480), sponsored by Sen. Hope Uzodinma (Imo West). The Bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Tertiary Education and TETFUND, to report back in four weeks.

4) A Bill for an Act to provide for the establishment of Federal Capital Territory University of Science and Technology, Abaji, FCT and for related matters, 2017 (S.B. 59), sponsored by Sen. Philip Aduda (FCT). The legislation has been referred to the Senate Committee on Tertiary Education and TETFUND, to report back in four weeks.

5) A Bill for an Act to provide for the regulation and effective monitoring of Metallurgical activities in Mines and Steel sector, Metallurgical inspection and raw material development in Nigeria and for related matter, 2017 (S.B. 260), sponsored by Sen. Theodore Orji (Abia Central). The Bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Power, Steel and Metallurgical Development, to report back in four weeks. 

6) A Bill for an Act to provide for the establishment of Nigerian Council for Food Science and Technology and for Allied matters connected therewith, 2017 (S.B. 92), sponsored by Sen. Ajayi Boroffice (Ondo North). The legislation has been referred to the Senate Committee on Science and Technology, to report back in four weeks.

7) A Bill for an Act to provide for the establishment of the Foreign Service Commission charged with the responsibility of ensuring excellence and professionalism in conducting the Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and for related matters, 2017 (S.B. 422), sponsored by Sen. Shehu Sani (Kaduna Central). The Bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs, to report back in four weeks.

8) A Bill for an Act to provide for the establishment of National Institute of Credit Administration and for other matters connected therewith, 2017 (S.B. 153), sponsored by Sen. Ben Murray Bruce (Bayelsa East). The Legislation has been referred to the Senate Committee on Establishment and Public Service Matters, to report back in four weeks.

9) A Bill for an Act to amend the Nigerian Institute of Management Act No. 14, 2003 and for other related matters connected therewith, 2017, sponsored by Sen. Mao Ohuabunwa (Abia North). The Bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Establishment and Public Service Matters, to report back in four weeks.
     


  • 2017-11-09 00:03:06