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Senate Rejects Bill to Extend Tenure of NASS Clerk and Others

Senate Rejects Bill to Extend Tenure of NASS Clerk and Others

A bill aimed at extending the tenure of the Clerk of the National Assembly, Sani Tambuwal, and other Directors in the administrative structure of the National Assembly has been rejected and set aside following a heated debate on Thursday.

Sponsored by the Leader of the Senate, Michael Opeyemi, the bill sought to increase the retirement age of National Assembly Service staff from 35 years to 40 years of service. The proposed legislation, titled “A bill for an Act to make provisions for the retirement age of staff of National Assembly Service and for other related Matters, 2024,” faced strong opposition during the deliberations.

Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe raised concerns about the differentiation between National Assembly staff employed by the National Assembly Service Commission (NASC) and staff in other government agencies. He questioned the justification for treating National Assembly staff differently and disagreed with the notion of specialization put forth by the bill’s sponsor, asserting that there was nothing exceptional about National Assembly staff that warranted deviating from the norm.

Senator Ali Ndume, representing Borno South, cautioned against prioritizing the interests of a few individuals at the expense of future generations. He warned that history would not judge the lawmakers kindly if they were to support a bill that served personal agendas.

Similarly, Senator Zangon Daura Nasir Sani, representing Katsina North, openly opposed the bill and called on the Senate President to reject it based on its lack of merit. He argued that the bill was driven by the vested interests of certain individuals and should not be legitimized by the upper legislative chamber.

During the proceedings, there was a chaotic atmosphere as lawmakers who supported the bill were prevented from speaking by those who opposed it.

Consequently, Senate President Godswill Akpabio deemed the bill contentious and postponed its consideration indefinitely.

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