Abia State House of Assembly Plenary for Monday, 23rd November, 2020

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Abia State House of Assembly resumed plenary today, Monday, 23rd November, 2020.

The plenary commenced at exactly 1pm with an opening prayer by the member representing Obingwa East Constituency (Leader of the House), Hon. Barr. Solomon Akpulonu.

The votes and proceedings of the last plenary were adopted as a working document of the House in a motion moved by the Leader, Hon. Solomon Akpulonu and seconded by the member representing Isuikwuato State Constituency, Hon. Barr. Emeka Okoroafor.

With the absence of message from the Governor, petitions, personal explanations and matters of urgent public importance, the Clerk read out the items on the Order Paper.

First was the presentation of the report of House Committee on Works and Project Monitoring on the Deplorable Condition of Uturu-Ihechiowa Arochukwu Link Road and other major roads in the seventeen Local Government Areas of Abia State.

The Committee which is Chaired by Hon. Ginger Onwusibe read out their report and recommendations.

The recommendations of the committee was adopted by the House as a working document while the report was committed to the committee of the Whole for further deliberation at a future legislative date.

Next item on the Order Paper was the presentation of the House Committee on Boundary and Security Matters on Abia State Homeland Security Watch Bill (H.A.B 33).

The Deputy Speaker of the House who also doubled as the Committee Chairman read out the report and their recommendations with the House adopting the recommendations of the committee as a working document and committed the report to the committee of the Whole for further deliberation at a future legislative date.

HAB 35 which is the Abia State Roads Maintenance Authority for the Local Government Areas of the State Bill was turned down by the House.

The Bill which was billed to pass its second reading couldn’t scale through as members of the House opposed the Bill sponsored by the Majority Leader, Hon. Barr. Solomon Akpulonu.

In their contributions, the Minority Leader of the House, Hon. Abraham Oba, the members Representing Isialangwa South and North respectively, Rt. Hon. Chikwendu Kalu and Hon. Ginger Onwusibe, argued that for the bill to stand, ABROMA which is an already recognized road maintenance Agency in the state ought to have been scrapped. They were of the opinion that the new bill would amount to duplication of law and suggested that the bill should either be presented as a bye-law for the Local Government Areas or be scrapped entirely.

In their own contributions, the member representing Obingwa West Constituency, Hon. A.C. Thomas Nkoro and his colleague from Isuikwuato, Hon. Barr Emeka Okoroafor, were of the opinion that the House should conduct a public hearing for the bill with key stakeholders invited to iron out grey areas in the bill.

Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Chinedum Orji, also aligned with his colleagues for an outright withdrawal of the bill.

Consequently, the House moved that the bill be withdrawn with the Leader of the House given more time to do a more extensive work on the bill.

Other items on the Order Paper were deferred to a future legislative date in a motion moved by the Majority Leader of the House and seconded by the Minority Leader.

The House adjourned plenary to reconvene on Monday, the 30th day of November, 2020 at 10.00am.

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