5 Things Nigerian Senate Did On Tuesday Before Suspending Plenary Indefinitely

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Nigerian National Assembly - Senate
Nigerian National Assembly - Senate
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Abuja (9News Nigeria) – A backlog of legislative duties forced the Senate to announce the resumption of plenary for Tuesday, April 28, 2020 after over a month of adjournment.

The red chamber had suspended plenary abruptly on March 24, 2020 following the increase in the cases of coronavirus in Nigeria. At the time, there were over 40 confirmed cases in the country.

But issues like review of the 2020 budget, N500 billion Intervention fund, economic stimulus bill, among others, made it imperative for the chamber to resume plenary.

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan
The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan

Straight into closed door…

The red chamber resumed and went into an executive session at 10:30am which ended at 12:02pm. Unlike in previous cases, details of what transpired during the session were not given by the Senate President.

Letters from Buhari…

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, read a welcome address to senators. He thereafter read out some communications from President Muhammdu Buhari.

One was a request to borrow N850billion from the domestic capital market. This request was expeditiously approved. The remaining letters from Buhari asked for confirmation of nominees into Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) Federal Civil Service Commission (FCSC) and Federal Character Commission (FCC).

Covid-19 motion…

motion titled “Covid-19 Pandemic: Reviewing the National Response to the challenges and the way forward” was debated. Sponsored by Sen. Abdullahi Yahaya Abubakar (Kebbi North), Sen. Abaribe, Enyinnaya Harcourt (Abia South) and five others, the motion urged the Federal Government to appropriate at least 10% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as a stimulus package for investment into: Health & Education infrastructures; Agricultural value chains; Solid mineral value chains; Renewable sources of energy; Petroleum industry value chain; Research, Science and Technology. It also called on the Executive to fast track the submission of the revised MTEF, FSP and 2020 national budget to the National Assembly for consideration and passage.

New spokesman named…

The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan reshuffled standing committees and announced a new Spokesman, Senator Bashiru Ajibola (APC, Osun). The former acting Godiya Akwashiki (APC, Nasarawa) is now the Chairman Senate Committee on Labour, Employment and Productivity and Senator Biodun Olujimi (PDP, Ekiti) was also made the Chairman Senate Committee on Diaspora, Civil Society Organisations and Non Governmental Organisations.

Adjournment sine dine

After the announcement of new positions, the chamber resolved to suspend plenary indefinitely till it receives an executive communication. Lawan, however, said the senate standing committees will continue duties while others will work from home.

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