Buhari signs law conferring immunity on lawmakers


President Muhammadu Buhari has assented to a law granting immunity to the lawmakers, known as the Legislative Houses (Power and Privileges) Act 2018.

The law “increases the power of the legislature, gives the legislators immunity on what they do on the floor and in plenaries, and increases their powers to do their legislative work more effectively.’’

Senator Its Enang, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), who made this known briefing the press at the State House, in Abuja on Friday, said the Act also gives the legislature and the legislators through the appropriate officers, power to effect arrest of any person who offended the Act.

“The Legislative House Power and Privileges Act, grants the Legislative Houses in the National Assembly and State Houses of Assembly immunity from litigation for actions taken in plenary or committee proceedings of the House or committee.

“It strengthens the power of the Legislators to carry out their Legislative functions.

“The powers include powers to summon any person to appear before her, give evidence, including power of an officer of the legislative House to arrest any person who commits an offense against the Act,” Enang said.

He said the National Institute for Legislative Studies (Amendment) Act establishing the institute and widens her powers to include powers to provide training courses and award Degrees on Democracy, Party Politics, Electoral Process, Legislative Practice and Procedures, among others.

Seven other bills signed into law by the President include, the National Senior Citizens Centre Act, 2018; the National Institute of Legislative Studies (Amendment) Act, 2018, and The Rail Loan (International Bank) (Repeal) Act, 2018, and Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreement between the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Kingdom of Spain (Domestication and Enforcement) Act, 2018.

The President also signed into law the Chartered Institute of Project Managers of Nigeria (Establishment) Act, 2018, Chartered Institute of Local Government and Public Administration Act, 2018 and Nigeria Agricultural Quarantine Service (Establishment), Act, 2018.

According to Enang, the National Senior Citizens Centre Act, 2018, allows the establishment of the National Senior Citizens Centres by institutions and three tiers of government in the country to cater for the needs of the senior citizens.

“National Senior Citizens Centre Act which makes it compulsory that institutions and the government would establish and have National Senior Citizens to allow for proper care, training, orientation/reorientation and care for senior citizens in Nigeria,” Enang said.



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