Wike’s loyalist Rivers Assembly overrides Fubara veto to pass public procurement amendment bill, 2024


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The Rivers State House of Assembly has overridden Governor Siminalayi Fubara’s assent to pass the Rivers State Public Procurement (Amendment) Bill, 2024 into law. The House took this decision after the governor withheld his assent to the bill, which was passed on March 26, 2024.

Securing Taxpayers’ Money and Ensuring Transparency

The Majority Leader, Major Jack, presented the bill, which was debated upon by members. The Speaker, Martin Amaewhule, who is loyal to the former governor and the FCT minister Nysom Wike, reiterated the essence of the bill, which is to secure taxpayers’ money and ensure that it is not spent on frivolities or twisted contracts. He bemoaned a situation where due process is relegated to the background, contracts are awarded without legal backing, and the state is governed in a dictatorial manner.

Upholding the Laws of Rivers State and the Constitution

The Speaker stressed that the House would continue to uphold the laws of Rivers State and the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as altered. He added that if the governor continues in this manner, the House would take more stringent measures at the appropriate time, as they cannot stand aloof and watch the governor breach the laws of the state in a tyrannical manner.

Invoking Constitutional Provisions

In accordance with the provisions of Section 100 (5) of the 1999 constitution, as altered, the House voted and passed the bill into law with a two-third majority of votes.

Other Developments

The House also discussed a preliminary report on a petition by two local government chairmen, presented by the Chairman of the House Committee on Local Government, Ignatius Onwuka. The report highlighted the agony of the staff of Emohua Local Government Area, who have not been paid salaries for two months on the directive of the acting chairman of the Local Government Service Commission.

The Speaker condemned the recalcitrance of the official who parades himself as the acting chairman of the Local Government Service Commission, describing it as a result of administrative lawlessness encouraged by the government. The House resolved to mandate the Committee to invite the Commission’s Secretary again and, if he fails to appear, invoke its powers by issuing a warrant of arrest.

New Bills Introduced

The Rivers State Electricity Market Bill, 2024, sponsored by the Speaker, Amaewhule, was read for the first time on the floor of the House. The bill seeks to repeal the Rivers State Electricity and Gas Board law CAP 50, Laws of Rivers State,1999, and enact the Rivers State Electricity Market law to provide for electricity supply, its power generation, transmission, and distribution within Rivers State, as well as establish the Rivers State Electricity Commission for the enforcement of consumers’ rights and obligations.

The Rivers State Local Government (Consolidation) Bill, 2024, presented by the Deputy Speaker, Dumle Maol, was also read for the first time. The bill aims to consolidate all the Local Government laws in the state for ease of reference.


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