OrderPaperToday – The House of Representatives has again passed the Nigeria Police Force Trust fund bill.
The bill was read for the first time in the House of Representatives on the 1st of March 2017, passed for second reading on 25th of May, 2017 and referred to its committee on Police for further legislative action before it was read for third time on the 13th of February, 2018.
But some few hiccups were observed the in the bill as passed which necessitated the legislators to rescind the passage and rework it.
Speaking on the report on the reworked on Wednesday, chairman of the committee on rules and business, Edward Pwajok (PDP, Plateau) said the legal department of the national assembly observed that the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) was mistakenly replaced with National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission as the body responsible for payment of remuneration of board members of the commission.
He also noted that the fund will only be in operation for 6 years.
The bill was passed by the committee of the whole following the adoption of the report of the committee on police affairs.
Lasun Yusuf, the chairman of the committee of the whole and deputy speaker of the House, first raised concern about the bill, querying the need to create a new bill while the Police Service Commission act could be amended to include the trust fund.
The chairman of Committee on Police, Abubakar Lawal responded that the Police Service Commission is not equipped enough to accommodate the trust fund.
He said: “The essence is to raise more money, so that they can efficiently do their job. The objective of the bill is to tax companies as corporate social responsibility, and to ensure they get donor fund. Lagos is currently doing it. If you listen to the complain, some of the chopper, and helicopters of the Police are not in use because they cannot pay bills, they cannot afford training.”
Deputy Speaker who was not satisfied with the response further pressed that the parallel drawn between states and federal government is not satisfactory, arguing that the states are resorting to trust fund because they have no direct control over the Police.
The two clauses under consideration were subsequently passed. According to the bill, only a retired Police Inspector General could serve as chairman of the fund if signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari.