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Again, Rivers Assembly overrides Fubara to pass bill into law


The Martin Amaewhule led Rivers House of Assembly on Friday override Governor Siminalayi Fubara to pass the House of Assembly (Amendment) Bill into Law.

Recall, that the House has passed the Assembly Service Commission (Amendment) Bill on the 15th of February, 2024, and transmitted same to Governor Siminialayi Fubara for assent.

Martins Wachukwu, the media aide to Amaewhule in a press statement said: “Displeased by the Governor’s failure to assent to the Bill within the constitutional window of thirty days, the House decided to override the Governor’s Assent

“Remarking on the Bill which was represented by the Majority Leader, Hon. Major Jack, and debated by Members, the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Martin Chike Amaewhule, cited Section 100(5) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as altered, which empowers the House to override the Governor, where the Governor withholds his assent. The Speaker then put the question, and in accordance with the constitutional provision of two-third majority votes, 24 Members present unanimously agreed to override the Governor”.

Commenting further, Rt. Hon. Amaewhule described the amendment to the House of Assembly Service Commission Law as one that merely returned the power donated to the House by the Principal Law in the appointment of the Chairman and members of the Assembly Service Commission; stressing that the amendment is in the best interest of staff of the Rivers State House of Assembly, and wondered why the Governor refused to give assent to the Bill.

The Speaker reiterated the House commitment to the continuous strengthening of institutions in the State; adding that with the passage, the Bill has now assumed the garb of law by virtue of section 100(5) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as altered.
Earlier, the House gave First Reading to the Rivers State Public Procurement (Amendment) Bill, 2024, sponsored by Hon. Lemchi Nyeche, Member representing Ikwerre Constituency.
The Bill seeks to amend the Rivers State Public Procurement (Amendment) Law No. 1 of 2021 and other related matters.

Our Correspondent reports that this the second time that the lawmakers will override Fubara to pass bills into law since the political crisis between the Governor and his predecessor, Nyesom Wike started about five ago.

One of the bills passed by the mostly pro-Wike lawmakers was the Rivers Local Government Amendment Law which stopped the Governor from running the local governments with caretaker committee

The Speaker had earlier accused Governor Siminalayi Fubara of not planning to conduct local government elections in the state when he refused to sign the bill.

“By the reasons given by the Governor it means he doesn’t plan to conduct local government elections in the state. The key thing here is that this law removes the power of the Governor to appoint Caretaker Committee Chairmen for the Local Governments, the Governor is not happy that we’re removing his powers to appoint caretaker chairmen,” Amaewhule said when the lawmakers override the veto of Fubara to pass the bill into law.

The other bills passed into law after Fubara refused to assent to them by the lawmakers are the Rivers State Traditional Rulers Amendment Law, the Rivers State Advertisement and Use of State Owned Property Prohibition repeal law and the Rivers State Funds Management and Financial Autonomy Law.

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