Senate reviews bills rejected by Presidency
The Senate, on Wednesday, made a move to review four bills passed by the National Assembly which the Presidency said it would not assent to.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, while acting when President Muhammadu Buhari was on medical vacation in the United Kingdom, had written to the Senate that he withdrew his assent to the bills based on various reasons.
The bills were Dangerous Drugs (Amendment) Bill 2016, National Lottery (Amendment) Bill 2016, Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme Fund (Amendment) Bill 2016, and the Currency Conversion (Freezing Orders) (Amendment) Bill 2016.
The Senate had said it would consult with its legal team for advice on the decision.
Majority Leader of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan, moved a motion for a review of two of the bills at the plenary on Wednesday.
In the motion, titled ‘Re-Committal of the Dangerous Drugs Act (Amendment) Bill 2017 and the Currency Conversion (Freezing) Orders Act (Amendment) Bill 2017,’ the Majority Leader recalled that the President had signified the withholding of his assent to the two bills.
He said, “The Senate observes that Mr. President withheld assent to the Dangerous Drugs Act (Amendment) Bill based on the concerns regarding certain words and phrases reflected in the bill that may be inconsistent with the Principal Act in Sections 6 and 21 respectively;
“It observes also that Mr. President withheld assent to the Currency Conversion (Freezing) Orders Act (Amendment) Bill on the concern regarding modalities for the communication of Asset forfeiture.”
The Senate approved the prayer of the motion to “constitute conference committee on the respective bills to consider the observations of Mr. President on the bills.”
Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the plenary, however, referred the bills to the committees who worked on them.