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The Eight Senate Mid Term Report Under the Leadership of Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki.

Politics
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Friday, June 09, 2017 11:07 AM

BILLS PASSED
Bills Passed By Each Senate at 2nd Year Mark


5TH SENATE: 65

6TH SENATE: 23

7TH SENATE: 28

8TH SENATE: 95

Bills Passed By Each Senate at 4th Year Mark


5TH SENATE: 129

6TH SENATE: 727TH SENATE: 128

8th Senate: Yet To Reach the Mark

PETITIONS CLEARED
Petitions Cleared By Each Senate at 4th Year Mark


5TH SENATE: UNKNOWN

6TH SENATE: 6

7TH SENATE: 6

Petitions Cleared By Each Senate at 2nd Year Mark


8TH SENATE: 72 (CONCLUDED AS OF WEDNESDAY, MAY 31ST)

Interventions and Promises Kept by the Senate
Senate initiated the first-ever National Assembly Joint Public Hearing on the budget. 3-day Public Hearing was to give the public, CSOs and stakeholders like labour organizations an opportunity to weigh-in on the 2017 appropriations bill.

Senate intervened in the Abuja Airport Closure. Stated that it would affect businesses operating in the capital. Pushed for alternatives to the closure of the Abuja airport. 

Senate investigation exposed abuse of import duty waivers on rice: the senate in a motion mandated its ad-hoc committee to investigate the removal of import waivers on rice.

Senate intervention led to review of Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN policy to enable small business owner’s access to Forex.

Detection of the fraudulent activities involved in the implementation of TSA and resolutions to bring such act to a halt saving Nigeria N20 billion from the implementation of the TSA policy.

Senate's mandated Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC to immediately abolish fixed charges on electricity consumption, and bulk marketing of villages and communities.

Motion by the Nigerian Senate on International Women’s Day 2016 on Gender Equality: This motion decried the rate of marginalization of Women and sought fair treatment for women in Nigeria.

The Senate has set up a Senate Committee on Legislative Compliance to hold Senators and Senate Committees accountable to their deadlines, mandates, etc.

In September 2016, the Senate established an 8-man Ad Hoc Committee on North East charged with ascertaining the total amount of funds that have been released to the Presidential Initiative on the North East and probing spending by the Federal Government on the humanitarian crisis in the North-east. This Committee indicted the Secretary to the Government of the Federation for misappropriating funds upwards of N200million.

In March 2016, the Senate allocated of N10bn to IDPs in the northeast in recognition of the dire situation.

Senate, in a motion mandated Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC to immediately abolish fixed charges on electricity consumption, and bulk marketing of villages and communities.

Senate, in a motion, halted the swift intervention on the proposed hike in prices of data plan by the Nigerian Communications Commission.

Senate has moved to investigate the Revenue Generating Agencies over alleged Leakages, Non Remittance and Misuse of Generated Revenue.

Senate passes motion to investigate the non-remittance of over $3.4bn in revenue by the NNPC.

The Senate constituted an Ad-Hoc Committee to investigate the fraud and anomalies uncovered by the 2013 audit report of the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, NEITI. This report revealed that Nigeria lost over $9 billion in stolen, unremitted oil money in 2013.

The Nigerian Senate exposed how South African telecom giant, MTN, laundered billions of dollars ($12 billion) over a number of years from Nigeria and, failing to pay necessary tax in the country.

The Senate promised pharmaceutical manufacturers that it would intervene in the issue of additional tariffs charged on top of the CET for raw materials that are needed to produce drugs and vaccines. This promise was kept.

The Senate President promised to set up a technical committee to produce a report on the enabling laws that are needed to make sure that our pharmaceutical industry can meet the demands of the entire country. This promise has been kept.

The Senate promised to intervene in the issue of the death of 3 Queens College students. The Senate President promised that the Senate would set up a Stakeholder Summit to look into comprehensive education reform in the country; ensure that additional funds were included for Queens College’s infrastructural challenges in the 2017 Appropriation Bill. The second part of this promise has been kept.

In 2015, the Senate President promised to pass comprehensive electoral reform laws before the election season starts. This promise was actualized in April 2017.

Senate promised to release the budget of the National Assembly as part of #OpenNASS. Fulfilled this promise on the 11th of May, 2017.

To make the budget process more transparent, for the first time since 1999, the Senate laid the budget and its details on the floor of the plenary.


PROMISES BY SARAKI
1. Saraki promised legislative aides and members of the 7th National Assembly that the payment of their severance allowance will soon commence. - Promise Kept

2. Saraki promised to make the breakdown of the National Assembly budget public. - Promise Kept

3. Saraki promised the proper implementation of the 2016 budget. (When PMB gave address at NASS). - Promise Kept

4. Saraki promised the early passage of the 2017 budget. ??

5. Saraki promised to include funds for the passage of the NILSpermanent site. (At NILS permanent site). - Promise Kept.

6. Saraki promised to advocate for increased patronage of made-in-Nigeria goods as a show of patriotism, and to help encourage the country’s Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs). (At Made in Aba Trade Fair). - Promise Kept

7. Saraki promised to champion a change in the Procurement Act of Nigeria, to give locally manufactured goods first option in the government procurement process. (At Made in Aba Trade Fair) - Promise Kept

8. Saraki promised online publishers that the Senate has no intention to pass any legislation to control or gag the press. (Meeting with online publishers). Promise Kept

9. Saraki promised the Center for Citizens with Disabilities that the Senate would work on examining ways to strengthen our laws for people with disabilities. (Meeting with CCD). - Promise Kept

10. Saraki promised that the Senate would use its supervisory role to plug the leakages of revenue in the country. (Meeting with US Ambassador).- Promise Kept

11. Saraki promised that the 8th Senate will break the PIB jinx. (Meeting with top management of Shell Petroleum Development Company). - Promise Kept (PIB is at 3rd Reading Stage in the Senate)

12. Saraki promised that the 8th Senate would implement the recommendations of the National Assembly Business Environment Roundtable (NASSBER). (@NASSBER). - Promise Kept

13. Saraki promised that the Senate will be committed to Women Empowerment. — Promise Kept (GEO Bill is at Committee/Public Hearing Stage)

15. Saraki promised that the Senate will work towards the eradication of child labour. ??

17. Saraki promised that the issue of malnutrition in the north east will be discussed and a lasting solution to be proffered. Promise Kept (NEDC Bill has scaled through both Houses)

18. Saraki promised to support Buhari in the fight against corruption. (Promise Kept — 3 Executive Bills at Committee Stage in the Senate)

11 KEY BILLS PASSED BY THE SENATE
1.  Customs Service Management Act (Repeal and Re-Enactment) (Passed June 2017)

As a key percentage of our revenue, it is important that the management of our nations customs and excise systems are run in-line with international best practices. This Bill provides:
  Penalties for violation of customs and excise laws: The proposed Bill significantly increases penalties for violations. It is argued that stiff penalties for infractions would help enforce compliance by traders.

   Alignment with global best practice: The proposed Bill adopts global best practices on trade facilitation, trader reviews and dispute resolution.helo customs block leakages and generate revenue for the government  and it can open and create more employment.

  Reform: It seeks to reform the administration and management of Nigeria’s current customs and excise regime. The Bill also establishes the Nigerian Customs Service and repeals the Customs and Excise Management Act of 1979 and other related legislation.

  Transparency & Accountability: In the past, excise duties were fixed without reference to the National Assembly. Now, all such changes will be backed by law, because a legislative framework that entrenches transparency and efficiency in our customs operations will be established.  

2. Ports & Harbours Reforms Bill (Passed April 2017)

    The protection of the rights and interests of port service providers and commercial port users within Nigeria

   Makes the ports more professional, creating more access to ease with which doing business, employment

     Facilitating the sustainable growth of trade through Nigeria’s ports.

   In collaboration with other agencies, ensuring that Nigeria’s ports are effectively integrated with other systems of infrastructure within and outside the ports

3  Secured Transactions in Moveable Assets (Passed May 2017)

  It creates a new ‘specie’ of capital that can now be used in our financial system

  Everyday Nigerians can now use invoices and receipts for loans and for creating working capital

  The market woman can go to the registry and convert her receipts into loans or capital

   Formalisation of transactions become more important

  More accessibility to loans that will encourage the informal sector to come into the formal sector-- because more people will now be engaged in start ups

4   Credit Bureau Services Bill (Passed May 2017)

   This Bill will help to reduce the risk of lending or engaging in business with individuals or companies with a financial history of ;not paying back.

  A credit reporting scheme reduces the risk of lending for everybody and reduces the potential for all the non performing loans.

  It is a fundamental behaviour changing bill. For employers it cuts down the risk of employing people with questionable financial histories, while for banks and people that lend others money, it helps to show the pay-back record of the ‘borrower’

   The implication in changing our corporate behaviour are profound.

5  Petroleum Industry Governance Bill SB237 (Passed May 2017)

  The Bill aims to introduce new operational and fiscal terms for the management of the revenue that is accrued from the sector.

   The Bill will allow the Nigerian government to retain a higher proportion of the revenue that is derived from oil industry operations. 

Additionally…     
    The Bill will to revise, update and consolidate existing petroleum legislation in Nigeria;

   The Bill will create a conducive business environment for petroleum operations and other SMEs.

    The Bill will enhance the exploration and exploitation of petroleum resources for the benefit of Nigerians;

     The Bill will provide for the inclusion of more local content in the petroleum industry.

   The Bill will also optimize domestic gas supplies particularly for power generation and industrial development. I.e. cheaper cost of petroleum products.

     The Bill establishes a progressive fiscal framework that encourages further investment in the petroleum industry while optimizing

      The Bill will unbundle and restructure the NNPC

    as well as remove the constraints of government funding and barriers to the entry of new players under a new set of rules that is clear and transparent to all parties

    The Bill will deregulate and liberalize the downstream petroleum sector; creating efficient and effective regulatory agencies

The Bill will promote openness and transparency in the industry; and encourage the development of Nigerian content.

  The Bill will make Nigeria’s oil industry one of the most transparent and accountable in the world – if properly enforced.

6.  Public Procurement Amendment Act: (The Made in Nigeria Amendment) (Passed June 2016)

  Makes provision for local content.

   Make MDAs give first refusal to indigenous firms and businesses in their procurement process.

  Makes MDAs to involve local entrepreneurs, any good or service that is ‘Made in Nigeria’ must be given first priority

7.   Nigerian Railway Corporation Act, 1955 N129 LFN 2004 (Repeal and Re-enactment) Bill 2015

    Brings the private sector in the running of the railways and in terms of concessioning private companies can now own trams etc.

    With the participation of the private sector in the railway system, the cost of traveling from one part of the country to another decreases because of competition in the system.

   Now, more Nigerian business owners will be able to move more goods and services across the country easily.

8.  Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Bill (Passed May 2017)

    This an Executive Bill.

   It establishes formalized relations between Nigeria and foreign countries when it comes to criminal cases eg. looted funds.

     It aids the anti-corruption fight, so we easily get repatriated funds.

    This Bill will also go a long way in bringing confidence to foreign investors in Nigeria, because they will know that there are international formalized channels of getting their funds back if they are ever stolen. More investor confidence translates into more investment in the country, and more jobs.

9. Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Bill (July 2016)

    Nigeria has over 20 million people living with disabilities

   This Bill ensures that people living with disabilities are protected from discrimination of all forms (workplace; infrastructure access; healthcare; education etc.)

  Establishes a clause that there must be 5% of people living with disabilities employed in government public organizations. 

10. Sexual Harassment in Tertiary Education Institution Bill (Passed October 2016)

Over recent years, sexual harassment in Nigeria’s tertiary institutions has reached epidemic proportions with female students routinely failed for declining favours from male lecturers.

    Provides for a five-year jail term for a lecturer convicted for sexually harassing male or female students.

   Makes provisions for lecturers and educators who may be falsely accused by their students to initiate processes by which students could be punished for false accusation.

  This law abolishes the consent defence claim by sexual assault and rape suspects, as currently contained in Nigeria’s criminal and penal codes. This means that any educator shall be guilty of committing an offence of sexual harassment against a student, if he or she has sexual intercourse with a student who is less than 18 years of age, an imbecile or of generally low mental capacity or blind or deaf or otherwise physically challenged.

  This law  also categorises it as an offence when lecturers or teachers  have  sexual intercourse with a student or demands for sex from a student or a prospective student as a condition to giving a grade or the granting of honours and scholarships, or the payment of stipend, allowance or other benefits, privileges or considerations.

  The Bill also stipulates that ‘Educators’ will be guilty of committing an offence of sexual harassment against a student if he or she solicits sex from or makes sexual advances towards a student when the sexual solicitation or sexual advances result in an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment for the student

11. North East Development Commission Bill (Establishment, etc.) Act Bill 2016

   This Bill establishes a commission that is tasked with the responsibility of rebuilding and rehabilitating the North East.

     The Commission will be partly funded by 3 per cent of VAT (Value Added Taxes) that accrue to the FG over a period of 10 years

     The Bill provides that the commission should be located in Maiduguri, the Borno State Capital

     The Bill is aimed at rebuilding the North East, so that Nigeria’s over 2 million IDPS can be resettled back in their homes

PROMISES BY SARAKI
1. Saraki promised legislative aides and members of the 7th National Assembly that the payment of their severance allowance will soon commence. - Promise Kept

2. Saraki promised to make the breakdown of the National Assembly budget public. - Promise Kept

3. Saraki promised the proper implementation of the 2016 budget. (When PMB gave address at NASS). - Promise Kept

4. Saraki promised to include funds for the passage of the NILSpermanent site. (At NILS permanent site). - Promise Kept.

5. Saraki promised to advocate for increased patronage of made-in-Nigeria goods as a show of patriotism, and to help encourage the country’s Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs). (At Made in Aba Trade Fair). - Promise Kept

6. Saraki promised to champion a change in the Procurement Act of Nigeria, to give locally manufactured goods first option in the government procurement process. (At Made in Aba Trade Fair) - Promise Kept

7. Saraki promised online publishers that the Senate has no intention to pass any legislation to control or gag the press. (Meeting with online publishers). Promise Kept

8. Saraki promised the Center for Citizens with Disabilities that the Senate would work on examining ways to strengthen our laws for people with disabilities. (Meeting with CCD). - Promise Kept

9. Saraki promised that the Senate would use its supervisory role to plug the leakages of revenue in the country. (Meeting with US Ambassador).- Promise Kept

10. Saraki promised that the 8th Senate will break the PIB jinx. (Meeting with top management of Shell Petroleum Development Company). - Promise Kept (PIB is at 3rd Reading Stage in the Senate)

11. Saraki promised that the 8th Senate would implement the recommendations of the National Assembly Business Environment Roundtable (NASSBER). (@NASSBER). - Promise Kept

13. Saraki promised that the Senate will be committed to Women Empowerment. — Promise Kept (GEO Bill is at Committee/Public Hearing Stage)

14. Saraki promised that the Senate will work towards the eradication of child labour. ??

15. Saraki promised that the issue of malnutrition in the north east will be discussed and a lasting solution to be proffered. Promise Kept (NEDC Bill has scaled through both Houses)

16. Saraki promised to support Buhari in the fight against corruption. (Promise Kept — 3 Executive Bills at Committee Stage in the Senate)

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2.   Senate Passes the Nigerian Customs Service Management Act (Repeal and Re-enactment) Bill, 2017
3.  Senate Passes Key Anti-Corruption Bill
4.  Democracy Day 2017 Speech by Ag Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, SAN
5.   Senate Passed Petroleum Industry Governance Bill
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7.   Nigerian Senate Passes Budget 2017 and OpenNASS on May 11, 2017
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