OrderPaperToday – The House of Representatives has described as untrue some media reports that the court has granted a restraining order for it not carry on with debate on the controversial Control of Infectious Diseases bill.
The spokesperson of the House, Mr. Benjamin Kalu (APC, Abia) in a statement made available in Abuja on Sunday, described the reports as malicious and misrepresentation of facts.
The statement said “the House of Representatives notes with dismay the erroneous reports by certain print and online media outfits, in what appears to be willful or malicious misinterpretations of the decision of the court in suit no FHC/ABJ/CS/463/2020 on 13th May 2020, asserting that a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has ordered the House to suspend the ongoing process of the consideration of the Control of Infectious Diseases Bill, 2020 (the “Bill”); a misrepresentation of facts which has in turn misled various other media outfits and the general public.
“While the House encourages the public and all media outfits to verify and refer to the certified true copy of the court’s order in all further social commentary or report on the subject matter, it has become necessary to set the record straight.
“The truth of the matter is that although the applicant, by way of a motion ex parte, sought a court order suspending the consideration of the Bill by the House, the court in its wisdom and in the interest of justice and fair hearing, declined to grant the reliefs sought by Applicant in order to enable the Respondents in the case to appear before it and enter a defence.
“It is unfortunate that the purport of the interim order was wrongly reported. The House, therefore, wishes to put the order of the court in proper perspective and state that the act of legislation is a sacred and constitutional responsibility which should not be subjected to flimsy or superficial reportage in the interest of our democracy.
“While the respondents await official service of processes in the above-mentioned suit as directed by the court, the House reiterates that as a creation of the Nigerian Constitution, it will continue to perform its lawful mandate without jeopardizing its healthy deference to the judicial system and the process of adjudication.”
Recall that Mr. Dino Melaye, former Kogi-West senator, had last week filled a suit against the National Assembly saying the bill threatened his right to life as a Nigerian.