Nigeria Senate President, Bukola Saraki took the official prayers himself and led the house to the day’s proceedings.
The NigeriaSenate moved into its Executive Session at 10:51 a.m and resumed from it at 12:24 p.m. SenatorSaraki reported that the executive session bordered on issues involving the Senate and the National Assembly entirely.
At the Executive Session, it was resolved that; Nigeria’s unity cannot be prejudiced for anything and is sacrosanct to the progress of the nation.
The Senate also sought an avenue to ensure peace is restored back to the troubled zones and the entire Nigeria.
Furthermore, the house resolved that every group seeking an agitation must court a constitutional means of agitation as that is the only respected route to making their voices heard.
Senator Rilwan Akanbi moved for the approval of votes and proceedings of Thursday, September 27th, 2017 while Senator Fatimat Rasaki seconded the motion.
The house moved into its next action for the day as the Senate President read a letter from President Buhari on his resumption of office as the President of Nigeria on the 21st of August, 2017.
He also read a letter from then Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo requesting an amendment of the Fiscal Responsibility Amendment Bill Act, the Passage into Law of the Fiscal Responsibility Amendment Bill and also the legal backing of the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
Senator Saraki thereby welcomed colleagues and informed them that the recess was an ample opportunity for taking stocks of the successes recorded so far and where it can be improved upon.
He further commended Nigeria’s exit from recession and confirmed the increase in job opportunities and employment that some bills passed have already created, urging the house to start the review of the budget implementation by the first week of October with preference for the budget involving Made In Nigeria products. The Senate President challenged the Standing Committee to work harder in their oversight functions.
He informed the house on the need to continually review the constitution as he congratulated the Super Eagles for their beautiful run in the World Cup Qualifiers so far and also African Female Afrobasket Champions, D’Tigress who ruled the continent in the basketball showpiece.
Saraki also prayed for President Buhari and asked for Allah’s guidance over his health as he expressed his commiseration with victims of the Makurdi flood.
After the opening of the floor of the house by the Nigeria Senate President, the house moved for several things which will be of benefits to Nigerians, some of the motions the house came up with is; Flooding and Flood Control: The Need for Urgent Action by Senator Yahaya Abdullahi, a motion commended by Senator Sabi Aliyu while he asked for the mitigating measures should be put in place in solving the problem.
Senator Ahmed Lawan shared his commiseration with the people of Kebbi State and congratulated the sponsor of the motion. In similar vein, Senator Paulker enthused that drastic actions are needed to be taken by the Federal Government of Nigeria as flooding is growing into a menacing phenomenon.
The Nigeria Senate agreed to;
– Urge the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to design and implement a National integrated community-based riverine and water channel dredging, desiltation and drainage program to cover the entire national riparian network,
– Urge the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to commence the dredging and desiltation of River Niger and Benue,
– Urge the Federal and State Governments to institute strict land use and environmental planning, including codes and cadastral planning of all urban locations under their respective control to ensure proper drainage systems and siting of dwellings and business premises away from water courses, river channels and flood plains, and
– Urge the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to urgently mobilize to the locations affected by the flood disasters with a view to extending humanitarian and medical assistance to avoid the outbreak of communicable diseases, particularly gastroenteritis and cholera which are very much prevalent in such places.
The NigeriaSenate also listened to another motion by Senator Yahaya A. Abdullahi on the sustenance and stability of post-recession growth of the economy. Senator Jibrin commended and seconded the motion and sought for focus so we don’t go back into recession.
Senator NaAllah further commended the Executive and called for immediate implementation of the budget urging his colleagues to support the motion. Senator representing Kogi West, Dino Melaye said we(Nigerians) must awaken our conscious state to the need to work on our economy and questioned the difficulty in funding of the 2017 budget if truly we were out of recession.
The resolution of the house on the motion are;
– Urging national economy managers to remain focused and ensure that the current weak growth of a mere 0.55% is built upon and increased substantially in the months and years to come,
– Urging the fiscal and monetary authorities to come together and harmonize fiscal and monetary policies with a view to drastically reducing the high interest rate that has adversely affected borrowing for investment by the real sector of the economy, and
– Urging fiscal authorities to drastically reduce the accumulation of domestic debt in order to free the market for better access by the private sector.
Senator Saraki thanked the mover of the motion, thanked the Executive and confessed that work is not done yet as the economic bills need to be fast-tracked and government needs to do more on infrastructures.
The third motion listened to by the house was moved by Senator Rose O. Oko on Innovative Education Technology: E-Learning and Blended Learning In the Nigerian Education Sector. The resolutions of the house were;
-Urging the Government through Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) to examine the feasibility and adopt the policy of education technology in promoting e-learning especially at the basic education level,
-Requesting the Ministry of Communication to provide broadband facilities to cover e-learning in schools in Nigeria, and
– Mandating the Committees on Education (Basic and Secondary), TERTFUND and Tertiary institutions and Communication to conduct a public hearing on Innovations in Educational Technology with relevant industry stakeholders with a view to enriching such a policy and report back in 4 weeks.
The fourth motion moved in the house was on the need to avoid or prevent inadequate releases in 2017 Budget and the need to expedite releases in Order to stimulate the Economy by Senator Gbenga B. Ashafa. On this, the house resolved to;
– Request that the Honourable Minister of Finance and the Honourable Minister of budget and National Planning appear before the Senate in plenary immediately to brief the Senate on the cause of the inadequate releases and steps being taken to expedite release of funds for the capital component of the 2017 Appropriation Act.
The Nigeria Senate President asked Senator Ahmed Lawan to follow up on the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun and the Minister of Budget and National Planning.
As the plenary for the day drew to a conclusion, the Senate President announced new committee chairmen and their vice chairmen. The committee and their new chairmen are;
– Interior – Senator Andy Uba. – Trade and Investment- Senator Sabo Mohammed. – Culture and Tourism-Senator Fatimat Rasaki. – Public account- Senator Matthew Urhoghide. – Local Content- Senator Yayi Adeola. – Cooperation and Integration- Senator Stella Oduah. – Capital Market- Senator Bukar Mustapha.
New Committee Vice Chairmen comprise;
Trade and Investment- Senator Sani Mustapha. 2. Communication- Senator Demola Adeleke. 3. Judiciary- Senator Jide Omoworare. 4. National Population Commission- Senator Shuaibu Lau. 5. Local Content- Senator Godswill Akpabio.
Senator Demola Adeleke is also a member of Committee on Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Establishment, Public Service, Marine Transport, Defense, Ecology and Climate change.
The Nigeria Senate President moved that every other agenda for the day should be brought up in another plenary and this was seconded by the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu with plenary adjourned to Wednesday, September 27th,2017 and the gavel was banged to signal an end to the plenary for the day.
Source: New Media Department, Office of the Senate President, Federal Republic of Nigeria