Attempt to revisit the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act amendment passed earlier by both chambers of the National Assembly, on Tuesday, failed at the House of Representatives.
At the resumption of the plenary on Tuesday, the House Leader, Honourable Femi Gbajabiamila, had canvassed for the suspension of the rules of the House to revisit the amendment.
While citing Section 1 (3) of the 1999 Constitution as amended, Gbajabiamila argued that the constitution prevailed over any ambiguity in any act, especially as the senate was trying to harmonise the CCT Act.
According to Gbajabiamila, “the House has been a House of the people and we have never been detached from the opinions of the public. It is not under your speakership (Honourable Yakubu Dogara) or our membership that the House will lose its integrity.
“When we discovered that the clauses are infractions to the constitution, we should put our breaks and reconsider it.”
In his own contribution, Honourable Kingsley Chinda moved a counter point of order citing Order 9 Rule 6, saying it was “impossible to revisit a resolution passed by House and concurred by the Senate, except the right processes were followed.
While ruling on the matter, the speaker said: “It should be fixed on notice, so everyone will be prepared and we will have ample time for it. For us to suspend the rules of the House to revisit the amendment, it is like an ambush.”
The amendments to the Act are as follows.
It amended Section 3 of the Act thus: “Upon complaint(s) of any breach or where it appears to the bureau that there is a breach of the provision of this Act, the person concerned shall be given particulars of such non compliance or breaches to explain before any reference to the tribunal.”
“This implies that the CCB cannot immediately refer a matter to the CCT without giving a public officer a notice.
Section 1 (4) which was expunged and replaced with “the chairman and members shall serve for a term of five years subject to renewal for one further term only.”
Section 4 (2) was amended to substitute the word “president” with “the national assembly” as the one to confer powers on the bureau and the tribunal.