Reps to review Peace Corps Bill, 21 others


The House of Representatives on Thursday, resolved to review the Peace Corps Bill and consider reasons given by President Muhammadu Buhari for not signing it, before deciding what to do next.

In a unanimous decision, the House also considered another 21 bills yet to be assented to by the president.

The 22 bills (including the Peace Corps Bill) were either rejected or not responded to by the president.

The resolution was sequel to a point of order on Thursday, where Hon Uzomma Nkem-Abonta (Abia), drew the attention of the House to the 22 bills that were transmitted to the president at various times which he did not sign.

He quoted various sections of the Constitution which mandates the National Assembly to override the president if he fails to assent a bill after 30 days.

He urged the House to look at the bills that were transmitted to the president, and see if the reasons he gave were good enough.

“The constitution says the rejected bills will come back to the House for us to look at it, veto it or otherwise,” he said.

Ruling over the matter, Speaker Yakubu Dogara mandated the Chairman, House Committee on Rules and Business to schedule a date when the House will look at the bills again and see the reasons given for not assenting, and decide on what to do.

The president had transmitted a letter to the House of Representatives last week Tuesday, withholding his assent to a Bill for an Act to establish the Nigerian Peace Corps.

He cited financial implications and duplication of duties of existing security agencies, as reasons for withholding his assent to the bill.

The National Assembly is empowered by the provisions of section 58(5) of the 1999 Constitution as amended, to override the president on Bills.

While the House requires 240 members to make up its two-thirds, the 109-member of Senate requires 73 Senators to veto the president’s assent.

Order 12(b)(c) of the Standing Orders and Rules of the House of Representatives (2016) also provides that the rejected Bill could be looked upon by the House (through a motion) and if supported by two-thirds of the Reps, the Bill is proclaimed law without the assent of the president.

Already, investigation has revealed that, over 180 Reps members had given support to overriding the President on the Bill.

Senator Dino Melaye, had also, on Wednesday, raised a point of order, where he called on President Buhari to recall the Bill and sign it, otherwise, the Senate would test its constitutional power on the Bill.


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