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Reps want Federal Character Commission chairman, secretary appointed from different regions

Bill to protect endangered species passes first reading

The House of Representatives on Tuesday moved to make mandatory, the appointment of the chairman and secretary of the Federal Character Commission (FEC) from the different regions of the country (North and South).

This is as the House passed for second reading, a bill for ‘An Act to Amend the Federal Character Commission (Establishment Etc) Act, 2004 to make the Appointment of the Chairman and Secretary from Different Regions of the Country to Reflect the Principle of Federal Character.’

Sponsored by Unyime Idem (PDP, Akwa Ibom), the bill seeks to amongst other put in place a legal framework and guide for the appointment of the two key positions of the Commission to be from the two regions of the country.

The proposed law particular plans to amend Section 9 of the Principal Act for effective administration of the objectives of the commission and equitable distribution of the key positions in the agency.

Read also: Reps extend execution of 2022 capital, supplementary budget to June 30

Therefore, Section 9 (1) of the Principal Act is amended by adding paragraph (c) to the provisions therein as a new paragraph under subsection (1) to read as follows: –

“9 (1) (c). The President shall put into consideration in the appointment of the Secretary that the positions of the Secretary and the Chairman appointed for the Commission shall not be from the same region of the Country in compliance with the principles of Federal Character.”

In a lead debate, Uyime said
the commission is primarily established with fundamental responsibility to promote, monitor and enforce compliance with the principles of the proportional sharing of all bureaucratic, economic, media and political posts at all levels of government.

He said: “This bill seeks to amend the provision of the Act to reinstate the position that the two critical positions to be appointed by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria be expressly and mandatorily from each region of the Country for the effective running and administration of the objectives of setting up of the Commission.

“All the amendments are imputed to strengthen the administration, organisation and management of the commission in line with best practices and global standards.

“Mr. Speaker and my distinguished Colleagues, Nigeria is a vast and diverse nation to which there should be equal representation of all the regions. The commission shoulders a huge responsibility of handling high volume of representation that requires the trust and confidence of the whole country.

“Having a regional representation would make the Commission equitable and efficient, thereby having a ripple effect on the developmental system of the country.”

The lawmaker said the enactment of the bill into law will have no direct cost implication on the public funds and will produce general benefit for the country.

“The Speaker, my respected Colleagues, the need to amend the Federal Character Commission Act to put in place a Legal framework for the appointment of the two crucial positions of Chairman and Secretary of the commission to be from the two regions of the country, is a patriotic move which I believe should be supported by this Honorable House,” Uyime said.