Buhari Declines Assent to NBC Amendment Bill

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Muhammadu Buhari

Ekweremadu says he’s not on travel ban list

Deji Elumoye in Abuja

President Muhammadu Buhari has declined assent to a Bill that seeks to amend the law establishing the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).

This is coming as the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, has said that he is not among Nigerians placed on the travel ban list
President Buhari’s letter conveying his position, which was addressed to Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, was read at plenary yesterday.

The president explained that his decision to withhold assent to the bill was because the amendment to the powers of the commission “deletes” existing paragraphs 21(U), which contains an important omnibus clause that grants the commission incidental powers, which are not specifically provided for in other sections of the Act.

“Pursuant to Section 58(4) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended, I hereby convey to the Senate, my decision on the November 26, 2018, to decline presidential assent to the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) Amendment Bill 2018. “I am declining assent to the bill because the amendment to the powers of the commission “deletes” existing paragraphs 21(U), which contains an important omnibus clause that grants the commission incidental powers which are not specifically provided for in other sections of the Act.

“We suggest that a more appropriate approach for the amendment for the creation of a new paragraph (U) as contained in the bill and the renumbering in the current paragraph (U), as a new paragraph
Meanwhile, Ekweremadu, has said that he is not among Nigerians placed on travel ban list.
Ekweremadu in a statement issued yesterday by his Media Adviser , Uche Anichukwu , said the news making the rounds that he is on the travel ban list was false and unfounded.

The statement read: “ The attention of the Office of the Deputy President of the Senate has been drawn to a misleading report by the a newspaper that Senator Ike Ekweremadu’s has been barred from traveling out of the country on the request of the Special Presidential Investigative Panel on the Recovery of Public Property. “For purpose of clarification and emphasis, the Office wishes to restate that Ekweremadu is not in court with the Panel or any other government agency over any corruption case.

He was rather sued by the SPIP on the grounds that he, in the Panel’s words, allegedly “neglected to declare” his assets “in the manner prescribed by the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property”.

“Ekweremadu’s position is that the Constitution demands every public officer to declare his or her assets to the Code of Conduct Bureau every four years, a provision he had since fulfilled, hence his refusal to fill fresh asset declaration forms forwarded to him by the Panel contrary to the Constitution.

“It is also his position that the Public Property Special Provisions Act, CAP R4 LFN, 2004, otherwise known as Decree No 3, 1984, which the Panel relied on to charge public officials to court has become obsolete and power to investigate non-asset declaration is now vested in the Code of Conduct Bureau by the 1999 Constitution (as amended).