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What Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, said about scrapping the House of Representatives

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(L-R) Clerk of the National Assembly, Mohammed Sani-Omolori; former Senate President, Ken Nnamani; Senate President, Ahmed Lawan; Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Idris Wase, and Leader of the House of Representatives, Alhassan Doguwa, at the third University of Benin/National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS) convocation ceremony held at the National Assembly in Abuja on October 28, 2019.

The Senate President has reacted to the call in some quarters, including Senator Rochas Okorocha, that the House of Representatives be scrapped, saying the legislature as presently constituted is meant to address the country’s diversity and ethnic composition.

Nigeria currently runs a bicameral legislature consisting of the lower chamber, or the House of Representatives, and the 109-member upper chamber, also known as the Senate.

To reduce the cost of governance, Okorocha, a former governor, had advocated for the removal of the House of Representatives.

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But, while speaking at the third University of Benin/National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS) convocation ceremony which held on Monday at the National Assembly in Abuja, Lawan insisted that adoption of a bicameral legislature by the framers of the constitution was intended to address the country’s diversity and ethnic composition to ensure justice, equity and fairness for all Nigerians irrespective of their background.

He noted that having a unicameral legislature may create problems of non-representation and exclusion from governance for minority ethnic groups in the country, as well as inefficient representation for groups in the majority.

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He said:

“Nigeria has consciously adopted to have a bicameral National Assembly; it is because of who and what we are.

“The diversity of Nigeria and ethnic composition of the country requires that we have a system that provides justice, equity and fair play.

“It is a conscious decision and design to ensure that everybody is represented in the country. We need bicameral legislature in Nigeria.”

The lawmaker explained that the quality of governance in Nigeria can only be improved by ensuring productivity on the part of lawmakers as against demanding for a unicameral legislature.

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He said,

“What we should insist on is productivity. Members of the National Assembly must justify the expenditure on us. That is what we should be concerned with.

“We must be productive and we are on the way. We are on the way to proving that we are going to be productive.

Politics

Obiano hails Buhari over Ewelukwa’s NBET appointment

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The Governor of Anambra, Chief Willie Obiano, has lauded President Muhammadu Buhari for appointing Dr Nnaemeka Ewelukwa as the Chief Executive of the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading (NBET) Plc.

A letter issued on behalf of the governor, signed by Mr C-Don Adinuba, the state’s Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment on Wednesday in Awka, described Ewelukwa’s appointment as a round peg in a round hole.

“You couldn’t have appointed a more qualified, competent and reform-minded technocrat for the job”, Obiano said in the letter.

Two weeks ago, the Minister of Power, Mr Saleh Mamman, announced that Buhari had approved Ewelukwa as the replacement for Dr Marylyn Amobi.

Amobi, who also hails from Anambra is to complete her five-year tenure on July 24.

“It is self-evident that the president recognises the critical role of NBET in the electricity value-chain in Nigeria and so went for the best to help move the power sector forward,” Obiano said.

Ewelukwa was until his elevation, the NBET General- Counsel.

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The incoming NBET boss has been involved in Nigeria’s power sector reforms for more than 10 years, having worked at the Presidential Task Force on Power, headed by Prof. Bart Nnaji before he was appointed the Minister of Power in July, 2011.

The letter further stated that as the pioneer NBET General Counsel and secretary, Ewelukwa led the team which negotiated with independent power producers on power purchase agreements.

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He also helped to facilitate huge investments from the private sector into Nigeria’s electricity generation business.

Obiano observed that the new NBET chief played a key role on the team which identified serious legal, regulatory and policy constraints to the development of Nigeria’s electricity.

“Due to the exceedingly impressive work done by such outstanding technocrats as Prof. Nnaji and Dr Ewelukwa, the British and American governments, among others, assisted Nigeria to develop the critical power infrastructure.”

Obiano recalled how such global firms as General Electric of the U.S., Siemens of Germany and Daewoo Heavy Industries of South Korea took an unprecedented interest in Nigeria’s power sector, due to the sterling contributions of the team.

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Obiano described Ewelukwa as “infectiously humble and principled, a team player and far-sighted leader with a good international exposure — key leadership requirements in today’s globalized world”.

The governor expressed his optimism that Ewelukwa would bring glory to Nigeria the way a number of Anambra indigenes given critical national assignments discharged their duties.

Ewelukwa has so far authored three books on electricity transactions and is a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NAN

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Politics

PDP sweeps Taraba LG polls

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The Taraba State Independent Electoral Commission (TSIEC) has declared candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) winners of the sixteen local government councils of the state on Tuesday, June 30, 2020, local council polls.

Declaring the results of the local government election which, was conducted on Tuesday, the chairman of the commission, Dr. Philip Duwe, said candidates of the PDP for chairmanship won all seats across the sixteen local government councils of the state.

Duwe said though the results for the 168 councilors in the state were earlier announced at the ward levels immediately after the elections on Tuesday, the commission was yet to compile the accurate results for the councilors, which he said would be announced shortly.

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He urged those who lost in the polls to accept defeat and agree that leadership comes from God.

Earlier on Tuesday in Takum, Governor Darius Ishaku of Taraba state shortly after casting his vote for the council election describe the election process as peaceful, transparent, and impressive.

The governor, who cast his ballots at Kurupanti polling unit Gutu ward Takum alongside his wife, Ann Ishaku, expressed happiness over the peaceful exercise.

“Before coming to my polling unit, I have gone to observe other polling units and I can tell you that the process is peaceful and transparent, I have also heard from my deputy who is voting at Gassol LGA and he said everything is going on peaceful and other places have also reported peaceful conduct of the exercise so I can tell you it is all peaceful.”

Contrary to the insinuation that council executives were imposed on the people against their choice by the government, the governor stressed that the selection process of the party’s flagbearers was transparent and the consensus was reached even at the primaries to avoid the crisis.

“I am the Father of democracy I can never allow the imposition of candidates against the will of the people, that is why right at the primaries we decided to go by consensus so as to avoid crisis and the people decided who should represent them.”

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BREAKING: President Buhari names Adesina, Seriki, Awoniyi, 39 others as ambassador nominees

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President Muhammadu Buhari named Debo Adesina, ex-Minister of State for defence, Ademola Seriki, Dare Sunday Awoniyi, among others in 41-man non-career and one career ambassadors submitted to the Senate for screening and confirmation on Wednesday.

Senate President Ahmed Lawan read the President’s letter of request on the floor at the plenary on Wednesday.

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Adesina was picked from Oyo State, Seriki from Lagos and Dare Sunday Awoniyi Kogi State.

The President had earlier approved the appointment of Professor Adesoji Adesugba as the new Managing Director of Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA), a parastatal under the Federal Ministry of Trade and Investment.

Prof Adesugba, an accomplished specialist in Investment Promotion and Economic Development, is a lawyer and a veteran of business promotion within and outside Nigeria.

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Adesugba is the National Legal Adviser of the National Association of Chambers of Commerce Industry Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) and the Chairman of its Education Committee.

Adesugba lectures part-time as a Professor of Business Administration at the Roegate College in Dublin, Ireland, and also lectured Investment Promotion at the Baden International Business School, Baden, Switzerland. Until recently, he was a visiting Professor at the American University of West Africa, Banjul, Gambia.

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