Speaker House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.
The National Assembly is being “inundated” with petitions from citizens worried about the impact of the recent policies of the Central Bank of Nigeria, says the speaker, House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiyamila.
The people are concerned that the policy approach “will not deliver its stated policy objectives”, he told attendees of a 2022 distinguished parliamentarians’ lecture in Abuja.
Mr Gbajabiyamila was delivering a paper titled “Delivering on our contract with Nigeria; implementing the legislative agenda of the 9th house of Representatives”.
According to him, “it should not be the normal course of things” for such a policy programme to be designed and approved and announced without any engagement with the legislature.
“Keep in mind, these lawmakers are the same people who will have to explain and answer for these policies in communities across the country,” the Speaker said.
“While each arm of government has its prerogatives and guards them jealously, our country cannot afford actions that set the stage for the competing objectives of different arms of government to descend into governance dysfunction and paralyzing conflict,” he stressed.
The 9th house, he continued, has been “an unusually productive parliament”, despite the limitations imposed by “a global pandemic”.
He listed the achievements to include: the Emergency Economic Stimulus Bill, the Police Service Commission Act, the Petroleum Industry Bill and the Electric Power Sector Reform Act.
Also, the house has successfully intervened in labour disputes, especially the recent dispute between the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the Federal government.
There was the need for the citizens “to be well informed on the functions of the legislature” to enable them to make the right electoral decisions while electing their Representatives, the speaker added.
The Director-General, National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS), Professor Abubakar Sulaiman explained that the lecture was organized by the National Assembly to “serve as a platform” where members of the Parliament could tell their stories, accomplishments as well as challenges, and make Legislative processes clearer to Nigerians.
Reporting by Ibrahim Shehu; Editing by Abdullahi Lamino and Tony Okerafor