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Senate Okays Establishment Of Maritime Security Trust Fund



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The Senate has passed a bill seeking to establish the Nigerian Maritime Security Trust Fund.

The passage of the bill followed the consideration of a report by the Conference Committee on the Nigerian Maritime Security Trust Fund (Establishment) Bill, 2022.

Chairman of the Conference Committee, Senator Danjuma Goje (APC, Gombe Central), in his presentation, recalled that the bill was passed in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, September 28, 2021.

According to the lawmaker, the Senate concurred with the passage of the bill after it was transmitted to the Upper Chamber on Wednesday, December 1, 2021, with some slight modifications.

He explained 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, January 18, 2022, for the purpose of harmonisation.

“The mandate of the Conference Committee, therefore, was to harmonise the area of difference in the two versions of the bill, as passed and make appropriate recommendations for adoption”, Goje said.

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He added that the Conference Committee met on Tuesday, February 1, 2022, to deliberate on the area of difference.

He 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 deals with the appointment of the Executive Secretary and other staff of the Trust Fund.

Whilst 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 Mr 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.

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

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

Meanwhile,  the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, on Wednesday, referred President Muhammadu Buhari’s request for the confirmation of Olugbenga Adeyanju as Commissioner at the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission.

The President’s request was referred to the  Committee on Anti-Corruption and Financial Crimes.

The nominee is 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 before the chamber in plenary.

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