Welcome to another Legislative Day in the 7th Abia State House of Assembly.
The Speaker, Rt Hon Engr Chinedum Enyinnaya Orji led Principal Officers into the hallowed chamber.
Hon Aaron Uzodike, Member representing Aba North State Constituency led the opening prayer.
The Abia State House of Assembly commenced plenary after the adoption of Votes and Proceedings of Wednesday, 15th December, 2021.
Hon Kelechi Onuzuruike, Member representing Umuahia North State Constituency brought up a Matter of Urgent Public Importance to the House wherein he said there is an existing curfew order in the State which was in response to the security challenges prevalent in South East States.
He reminded that the curfew restricts movement from 12am to 6am.
“We are in the Yuletide season and many well meaning Abia sons and daughters will travel from their places of residence to the State, it is therefore imperative to lift the curfew to ease their ingress into the State; businesses that thrive at night particularly the hospitality business in Abia State have suffered a dearth of patronage due to the curfew, it is therefore pertinent to lift the curfew in order to cushion the economic losses of these business owners and save the jobs of Abians in their employ,” he said.
Hon Onuzuruike further said that the Yuletide season is typically characterized by celebratory functions some of which are better suited for the night or late evening. He explained that lifting the curfew will serve to allow Abians attend these social functions and ease the undue pressure of driving recklessly to beat the curfew time which in most cases have resulted n the loss of life and valuable property.
The Lawmaker further said Abia State shares boundaries with other States and that during the Yuletide, residents of other states can only access their respective states through Abia State and that lifting the curfew will function to aid their passage through the State to their respective states without undue restriction.
Finally, he said it is true that the curfew was imposed for security reasons, however, the security agencies must put in place the necessary security framework that will ensure the security of Abians if the curfew is lifted.
Hon Kelechi Onuzuruike therefore pleaded to the House to consider his prayers.
The Speaker said the House adopts all the prayers made by Hon Onuzuruike and requested that the Executive takes them into consideration.
ORDER OF THE DAY
H.A.B. 36 : The Abia State Watershed Management Bill, 2021.
A Bill for a Law to provide for the Establishment, Operations and Functions of the Abia State Watershed Management Agency sponsored by the Majority Leader, Hon Solomon Akpulonu.
In a motion moved by the Majority Leader and seconded by the Minority Leader, H.A.B. 36 was deferred to be considered on another Legislative Day.
PRESENTATION OF REPORT
Presentation of the Report of the House Committee on Appropriation on H.A.B. 49: A Bill for a Law to make further Supplementary Provision of the Sum of Eighteen Billion, Nine Hundred and Twenty Five Million, Four Hundred and Three Thousand, Nine Hundred and Twenty Nine Naira ( N18,925,403,929 ) only, for the Services of Government of Abia State for the year ending 31st December, 2021.
Rt Hon Kennedy Njoku, Chairman House Committee on Appropriation presented its report for the proposed Supplementary Provision of the Sum of Eighteen Billion, Nine Hundred and Twenty Five Million, Four Hundred and Three Thousand, Nine Hundred and Twenty Nine Naira Only for the Services of Government of Abia State for the year ending 31st December, 2021.
In a motion moved by the Majority Leader and seconded by the Minority Leader, the House adopted the report of the Appropriation Committee as a working document of the House.
In another motion moved by the Majority Leader and seconded by the Minority Leader, the House amended the Order Paper to accommodate the consideration of the report and for the House to dissolve into the Committee of the Whole.
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
At the Committee of the Whole, the House deliberated on the contents of the report presented by the Chairman, House Committee on Appropriation.
Reporting what transpired at the Committee of the Whole, the Speaker said the House did page by page considerations of the report.
In a motion moved by the Majority Leader and seconded by the Minority Leader, the House amended the Order Paper to accommodate the Third Reading of H.A.B. 49.
After going through Legislative processes, the Speaker said “this is the time to delete the word Bill in any place the word Bill is, and replace same with the word Law.
Subsequently H.A.B. 49, Abia State Government of Nigeria Supplementary Bill was passed into Law.
Hon Solomon Akpulonu, Majority Leader of the House, moved that plenary be adjourned to another Legislative Day.
The Minority Leader, Hon Chijioke Chukwu seconded the motion.
Plenary was therefore adjourned to Wednesday, 29th December, 2021.
Courtesy: Media Unit, Office of the Rt Hon Speaker, Abia State House of Assembly.