- Raises the alarm over danger of imported tomato paste
Damilola Oyedele in Abuja
The House of Representatives has disagreed with plans by the Inspector General of Police (IG), Mr. Solomon Arase, to introduce stun guns for use by policemen in place of firearms as a measure to reduce casualties resulting from misuse of firearms.
The House warned that the rising crime in the country does not warrant a soft approach to handling criminals.
Hon. Ayodele Oladimeji (Ekiti PDP) who sponsored the motion on the issue, urged the IG to ensure that the appropriate punishment is served to whoever misuses his firearm, to those who fail to respect the rule of law, and to those who fail to conduct themselves professionally.
“Although stun guns, being an electroshock weapon or an incapacitating weapon that momentarily disables victims with an electric shock, will reduce incidents of extra-judicial and accidental killings by policemen on duty, its use could also lead to easy escapes for dangerous criminals.”
“It is an issue of concern that many of the incidents of extra-judicial killings in which the police have been implicated had to do with demands for bribes and refusal of the victims to comply, besides, many of the police personnel involved in those incidents allegedly acted under the influence of alcohol and narcotic which largely impaired their sense of judgment,” Oladimeji said.
The stun guns would also endanger policemen and the citizens to more danger from criminals who are usually equipped with sophisticated weapons, he added.
Meanwhile, at a time where several Nigerians have resorted to alternatives due to the scarcity of tomatoes in the markets, the House has raised the alarm at reports of sub-standard cancer-causing tomato paste being imported into country.
It therefore directed its Committees on Health Services and Drug and Narcotics to investigate the reports.
The resolution followed a motion under matter of public importance sponsored by Hon. Ossai Nicholas Ossai (Delta PDP) who alleged that the importers of the product are colluding with some indigenous manufacturers to release the sub-standard paste into the market.
The sub-standard paste is being sold at very cheap prices, resulting in low demand of the products of genuine indigenous manufactures, and retrenchment of their staff, Ossai added.
“Section 5 subsections (a) to (e) and (I) of National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control Act (NAFDAC) has given the agency the onerous task of ensuring that fake and substandard food items are not found within the Nigerian markets,” he recalled,
The House also mandated its Committee on Aviation to ascertain the extent to which the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) the Nigerian Airspace Management Authority, (NAMA) and the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) comply with their responsibilities of ensuring the airworthiness of aircraft operating within the country’s airspace.
Following a motion by Hon. Sergius Ogun (Edo PDP), the House also called on NAMA to adhere strictly to providing updated weather information for airlines.
“If a thorough investigation of the activities of airline operators are carried out with a view to ascertaining the airworthiness of aircraft operating in the country, it will help in no small measure to minimise the frequency of air crashes in Nigeria and also significantly improve the ratings of the Nigerian Aviation sector globally,” Ogun said.