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Senate Approves Bill To Establish Maritime Security Trust Fund

Nigeria Senate

February 24, (THEWILL) – The Senate has passed a bill seeking to establish the Nigerian Maritime Security Trust Fund.

The passage of the bill, followed the adoption of the report of Senate Conference Committee on the Nigerian Maritime Security Trust Fund (Establishment) Bill, 2022 at plenary on Wednesday.

The Chairman of the Conference Committee, Sen Danjuma Goje in his presentation, recalled that the bill was passed in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021.

According to the committee chairman, the Senate concurred to the passage of the bill after it was transmitted to the upper chamber on Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021, with some slight modifications.

He said that the area of difference noticed in the two versions of the bill by both chambers necessitated the constitution of a Conference Committee by the Senate on Tuesday, Jan. 18 for harmonisation.

“The mandate of the Conference Committee, therefore, was to harmonise the area of differences in the two versions of the bill as passed and make appropriate recommendations for adoption”, said Goje. Adding that the Conference Committee met on Tuesday, Feb. 1, to deliberate on the areas of differences.

The chairman stated that in the course of the deliberations, it was observed that the only area of difference in the two versions of the Bill, as passed by both Chambers, existed in Clause 14 of the Bill, which dealt with the appointment of the Executive Secretary and other staff of the Trust Fund.

While the House of Representatives version of the Bill provides in Clause 14 (1) that the appointment of the Executive Secretary of the Trust Fund shall be made by the President on the recommendation of the Minister.

“The Senate version provides that such appointment should be made without recourse to the recommendation of the Minister charged with the responsibility of Defence.”

He disclosed that after extensive deliberations on this area of difference, the Conference Committee adopted the Senate version.

The report was thereafter adopted by the chamber during plenary, and the bill to establish the Nigerian Maritime Security Trust Fund passed after consideration by the Committee of the Whole.

Also, President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, referred President Muhammadu Buhari’s request for the confirmation of Olugbenga Adeyanju as a Commissioner in the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related Offences Commission (ICPC), to the Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes.

The nominee was expected to appear before the committee for screening.

The committee was given two weeks to screen the nominee and put together a report to be presented at plenary.