7 March 2018

Nigeria: Senate Wants Buhari to Reverse Rejection On Peace Corps Bill

Senate has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to, in the interest of peace, reverse his withholding assent on the bill to establish the Peace Corps of Nigeria.

Senate is promising to revisit the bill and to override the President if he fails to rescind his action and assent to the bill immediately.

The position of the Senate followed the adoption of a motion by Senator Dino Melaye (Kogi West) during plenary.

Recall that President Buhari had rejected the Nigerian Peace Corps (Establishment) Bill, 2017 passed by the National Assembly and cited duplication of duty and funding challenges.

Yesterday, Senator Melaye relying on Senate rules, urged the Senate to compare the President to give the Bill a deserving priority attention.

According to Melaye "the same thing happened when the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps was to be established; there was also the same complaint that there was no money and all of that.

"But today, we can see the advantages of the civil defence and how they have helped in safeguarding government infrastructure," he stated.

The lawmaker further noted that about $5.5bn was borrowed from euro bond which he said has no impact on the welfare of the Nigerian youths.

"About $1bn is to be spent on security and how does this affect the youth of this country.

"Without fear or favour, the Peoples Democratic Party, in 16 years, borrowed N6tn and this government in three years, has borrowed N11tn but there is no specific programme that will empower the youth.

"Also, N500bn was earmarked for the social investment programme of the Federal Government, but we have not seen any impact.

"If the Peace Corps is given an opportunity to exist, thousands will be employed and this will help to fight unemployment in this country.

"We may need to write Mr. President to review his position; if not, we have the power on behalf of the Nigerian youths who voted us to veto him so that people will become the ultimate beneficiaries of this bill," he stated.

In his consideration, Senate President Bukola Saraki said Melaye's motion is noted.


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