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National Assembly takes over control of CCB, CCT from Presidency

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CCT

CCT. PHOTO: NAN

• Adjusts tenure of CCB boss, members
• Senators exchange words over amendments

The National Assembly yesterday transferred the power of the president to control the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) and the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) to itself.

At the conclusion of work on the bill to amend the CCB and CCT law, the legislature successfully altered Section 18 (2) to enable it to confer additional powers on the CCB instead of the president.

The bill which was passed yesterday stopped the president from enjoying the powers of exempting public officers from investigation and trial and gave such powers to the National Assembly. Section 18 (1) of the existing Act reads: “The president may by order exempt any cadre of public officers from the provisions of this Act if it appears to him that their position in the public service is below the rank which he considers appropriate for the application of those provisions.”

Section 18 (2) of the existing Act provides that “The president may by order confer on the bureau such additional powers as may appear to him to be necessary to enable it to discharge more effectively the functions conferred upon it under this Act.”

The bill was initiated and first passed by the House of Representatives which transmitted it to the Senate for concurrence in May 2016.

With the concurrence of the Senate with the House of Representatives yesterday, the bill will be sent to President Muhammadu Buhari for assent.

Also yesterday, the Senate agreed with the House of Representatives that the appointment of the chairman of the CCB be based on tenure of two terms of five years each. The bill reduces the tenure of the chairman of the CCB and all members from serving until they attain 70 years to a term of five years subject to the confirmation of the Senate.

“The chairman and members shall serve for a term of five years subject to renewal for one further term,” the bill stated. Section 20 (4) has made it mandatory that the appointment of the chairman and members of the CCT be subjected to the confirmation of the Senate.

Another significant amendment effected to the CCT/CCB Act is to make it compulsory for any case of breach or non-compliance to be brought to the notice of the person concerned to enable him to make a written admission of such breach or non-compliance and where such is done, there shall be no reference to the tribunal.

But the passage of the bill witnessed an exchange of unpleasant words on the floor of the upper chamber as some of the more sensitive clauses were being considered. Many senators resorted to the use of un-parliamentary words.

Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the session had to intervene to restore peace. He cautioned Ahmed Lawan against describing the amendment of the bill as self-serving.

Ekweremadu said: “For the purposes of the public, I think we need to put this in proper perspective. This bill came as a House bill and like other House bills we concurred. But in reference to this we decided to send it to the committee so that they can have another look at it, we would have passed it that same day but we sent it to the committee and it came up this morning. The question was put as to whether we should consider it and the answer was yes. So, we didn’t just consider it because we wanted to consider it, the question was properly put whether we should go to the committee of the whole to consider it and everybody said yes.

“Now we are taking it clause by clause, but we have not jumped to any particular clause. Sometimes we take two or three clauses but here, because of the sensitive nature of this bill, we are taking it clause by clause and we are even bending over backwards to reconsider issues. So it will be unfair to us to accuse ourselves here of being unnecessarily hasty. That is not fair to this Senate.”

Lawan (APC, Yobe North) had said: “The Senate is a moderator on legislation. This bill emanated from the House of Representatives and our colleagues there passed it. I agree totally with the submissions of some of our colleagues here that we don’t have to tarry to pass it. We will be doing ourselves and this National Assembly a better service if we step down this thing and move on to some other things that will make this a better bill only when we convince ourselves that what we are trying to do is not for our sake.”



20 Comments
  • Abiodun

    No

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  • vic

    INDEED, THIS AMENDMENT BY THE SENATE IS SELF-SERVING AND FOR ENTIRELY SELFISH REASONS WITH THE INTENTION OF INTERVENING INTO THE AFFAIRS OF CCB AND CCT WHICH WILL NOT GET THE ACCENT OF PRESIDENT BUHARI. JUST WATCH AND SEE.

    • Vicky

      @vic et al, hear this:
      Section 58, Subsection (4) of the 1999 Constitution (Amended) states thus:

      [Where the President withholds assent and the bill is again passed by each House by two-third majority, the Bill shall become law and the assent of the President shall not be required.]

  • FRA

    The bill is a waste of parliamentary time and resources. No sane president of Nigeria will assent to a bill that is not only self-serving but seeks to destroy the essence of CCB and CCT. The bill ridicules the crime of perjury, and the administration of criminal justice. It simply contends that if there is an allegation that a person lied on oath, that person should first be given opportunity to ammend his statement before he can be taken to court. In simple language, the bill is asking the law to allow a thief hide his loot before he can be taken to court. What a hogwash!

  • simon tor gideon

    By extention,the NASS now wants to be exercising executive powers outside its role of a legislative house and check and balances?This is ridiculous and I advise our lawyers to quickly challenge this in competent courts before these rogues will wake up one day and pass a law to allow them supervise how couples are mating.

  • Donny brasco

    They will have to put a gun to GMB’s head for him to assent to this bill. I see Saraki’s hands all overt this Bill.

    • biokings

      Perhaps, you may not have heard about VETO POWERS of the legislature

      • amador kester

        You, the people speaking grammatically in technical tongues while democracy goes to the birds in those chambers should resolutely march on those legislative rogues and stop them. Instead you talk about two thirds veto and some rotely learnt constitutional technicalities. What does that amount to when democracy is going to pot in the hands of reckless, opportunistic philistines? The price for sustainabl democratic liberty is eternal vigilance

      • vic

        A GOOD POINT.

      • Donny brasco

        Or maybe you do not know that the president’s veto powers can be over ridden by 2/3 of the house. My point was a sarcastic comment. I do apologise if that was lost on you.

        • biokings

          I cant see any sarcasm in your statement but rather a direct display of ignorance – “They will have to put a gun to GMB’s head for him to assent to this bill. I see Saraki’s hands all overt this Bill”

          • Donny brasco

            Once again forgive me. You obviously do not get the sarcastic humour but are taking the words literally. I appreciate and apologise for your insular view because not everyone gets dry British humour.
            I will bear this in mind going forwards.
            P:S Don’t be so defensive about statements you don’t agree with. Allow for diverse opinions it only improves us as a people. Just my two cents.

    • MUkintu

      If they can muster a two- third majority Buhari will have no choice. Remember many requests of Buhari are on their table waiting for approval.

    • amador kester

      It is a legislative irresponsibility coming at a time ta top echelon of the legislature is under the prosecutory processes of the ccb tribunal and i dont ever want to use the term legislative coup. But these halfwitted gentlemen and ladies enjoy taking a roughshod ride over the intelligence of fellow citizens they claim to represent and thus unwittingly push their luck too far

    • vic

      YES INDEED, SARAKI IS A MONEY LAUNDERER AND A BIG THIEF. HE KNOWS HE WILL GO JAIL BUT BEFORE THAT HE WILL DO EVERYTHING TO ESCAPE.

  • sammy728

    They don’t know what they are doing or should be doing. Therefore, all over the place. soon, they will pass law that will make the presidency report to them directly and not to the people.

  • infinity2020

    These SATAN continue to find all means possible to entrench corruption into the system. We do not need the senate and the House Nigeria can not afford this system. If Nigerians has been beaten so down that they no longer have the energy and power to dislodge the leach on their neck may be Buhari should help us by suspending the constitution and do the cleaning up and then pick up democracy later. After all all these western word goes through their dark times before they got to where they are today. PMB Nigerians are crying out to you for help.We will support you. Can you imagine the magnitude of the support you get when DSS raided the houses of these evil judges?. You know very well that our democracy is a ruse for looting and impunity. PLEASE HELP !!!!!!

    • Vicky

      The President cannot suspend the Constitution, not even the Legislators. the Constitution is the grandnorm upon which all under it are at servitude to it not in the sense of slaves but in absolute obeisance always. absence of the Constitution is impossible for it connotes absence of all including your Buhari.

      Section 58, Subsection (4) of the 1999 Constitution (Amended) states thus:

      [Where the President withholds assent and the bill is again passed by each House by two-third majority, the Bill shall become law and the assent of the President shall not be required.]

  • vic

    DISMANTLE CORRUPT SENATE AND THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. THESE ARE THE MAJOR HOUSES OF THIEVES, CORRUPTION AND DAILY FRAUD IN NIGERIA TODAY. SO LONG AS THEY ARE THERE, NIGERIA WILL NEVER DEVELOP.