FG, Lagos State stop barge operations along Marina coastline
• NPA to revoke companies’ approvals, CP to arrest, prosecute offenders
• Assembly passes Legislative Service Commission (Amendment) Bill 2020
The Federal Government, in conjunction with Lagos State, yesterday ordered the stoppage of all barge operations, which have desecrated the once beautiful and peaceful Marina coastline.
However, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) said it would revoke barge approvals granted some companies operating in Lagos.
Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi and Lagos State governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, made the stop-work order during an unscheduled inspection of activities around the coastline.
The duo, seeing the long row of trucks and containers that have constituted health and security hazards on the Marina, lamented the devastation of the coastline that used to be the pride of the state, attracting visitors.
Amaechi and Sanwo-Olu described the “unwholesome” activities on the coastline as “shocking” and “unacceptable.”
The minister, therefore, stressed urgent need to sanitise the entire Marina coastline and restore its tranquility and beauty.
He also ordered that trucks must immediately stop coming to Marina to load.
Amaechi, who stated the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) did not grant anyone permission to carry out barging operations, insisting that all such activities must stop immediately, said: “The Federal Ministry of Transport has agreed with Lagos State government to ensure that whoever is making use of Marina coastline should stop. We have agreed with the Commissioner of Police to stop those using the roads and we have also agreed with the NPA to cancel all barge permits pending when each person will come back to NPA, NIWA and Lagos State government to renew such approval.”
Sanwo-Olu directed the Lagos State CP to arrest and prosecute anyone who flouts the order to stop ”unauthorised activities” on the Marina.
He said that the state government would do everything to bring sanity to the coastline.
“We are also talking with the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing because we understand that some of the approvals were from the Ministry of Works. So, we are also taking up that responsibility and we would do what we need to do,” the governor said.
IN another development, following the full financial autonomy granted state legislatures in the country by the constitution, the Lagos State House of Assembly has passed into law its Legislative Service Commission (Amendment) Bill 2020.
All the lawmakers present at the plenary unanimously passed the bill, which is an amendment to the Lagos State House of Assembly Service Commission Law of 2015, after the third reading.
The law is to give legal backing and operational modules to the new financial autonomy granted state legislatures and judiciary in Section 121 (3) of the Fourth Alteration of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which the President supported with an Executive Order on May 22, 2020 for its immediate implementation.
The newly-amended law, which is now awaiting Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s assent, consists of 12 amendments and seven new sections.
Among the new amendments is Section 4, which deals with the tenure of the chairman and members of the commission.
The amended Section 4 states: “The chairman and members of the commission shall hold office for a term of five years and may be eligible for re-appointment for a further term of five years only.”
Section 21 deals with the tenure of the Clerk of the House. Stating inter alia that the Clerk of the House shall hold office for a period of four years and may be eligible for re-appointment for a further term of four years only. Section 22 creates five Deputy Clerk positions, which are Deputy Clerk (Legislative Matters), Deputy Clerk (Legislative Drafting and Legal Services), Deputy Clerk (Publication), Deputy Clerk (Administration and Human Resources) and Deputy Clerk (Finance and Accounts).
Among the newly-created sections of the law are Sections 24 and 29, which deal with fund of the commission and payment of salaries, pensions, other remuneration and allowances payable to members, and staff of the House of Assembly respectively. The two items are now domiciled in the budget of the House of Assembly.