Bill to extend tenure of NASS Clerk, Sani Tambuwal, others rejected in Senate

A bill seeking elongation of tenure of the Clerk of the National Assembly from 35 years to 40 years of service, which the current Clerk, Sani Tambuwal, would have been the first beneficiary, was rejected and stepped down after a heated debate on Thursday.

The bill was sponsored by the Leader of the Senate, Michael Opeyemi, urging the upper legislative chamber to extend the tenure of the Clerk and other Directors in the administrative structure of the National Assembly.

The proposed legislation was 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.’

The bill was heavily opposed with Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe wondering if staff of the National Assembly, who were employed by the National Assembly Service Commission, NASC, are different from staff in other agencies of government.

The former Deputy Governor of Abia State faulted reasons adduced by the sponsor of the bill that emphasised on specialization, insisting that there was nothing special about staff in National Assembly that would warrant the 10th Assembly doing the wrong thing.

Senator Ali Ndume, representing Borno South, warned that posterity would not be fair to the lawmakers if the interest of few individuals packaged in the bill was sustained by the Senate.

In the same vein, Senator Zangon Daura Nasir Sani, Katsina North, openly opposed the bill and asked the Senate President to throw it out for want of merit.

He said the bill was laced with the interest of some personalities and the upper legislative should not be used to legitimize it.

“Mr President, my name is Senator Zangon Daura Nasir Sani representing Katsina North Senatorial District. I am opposing the bill because it seems to carry the interest of some powerful element and we should not be used to legitimize it.”

Recall that few other lawmakers, who may have support for the bill, were not allowed to speak by those who opposed it, thereby causing pandemonium in the Senate.

Subsequently, Senate President, Godswill Akpabio, declared the bill contentious and stepped it down indefinitely.

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