Rivers Assembly Passes Local Govt (Amendment) Bill, Gives First Reading To SIEC (Amendment) Bill

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THE Rivers State House of Assembly at its 120th Legislative Sitting, on Wednesday, further amended the Rivers State Local Government  Law No. 5 of 2018 and other matters connected thereto.

Before passing the Bill, the House debated on the pros and cons of the Bill; and thereafter, in line with the rules of the House, resolved into  Committee of the Whole and gave the Bill clause by clause consideration.

Contributing to the Bill, members commended the sponsor of the Bill, describing it as an essential amendment that will engender smooth and uninterrupted democratic administration at the local government level. 

Commenting on the Bill, the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Martin Chike Amaewhule posited that the intendment of the Bill was to amend Section 9(2), (3) and (4)of the Principal Law to empower the House of Assembly, via resolution, to extend the tenure of elected chairmen and councillors, where it is considered impracticable to hold local government elections before the expiration of their three years in office; adding that the amendment was to ensure that local government elections are conducted before the expiration of the outgoing local government administration.

Adumbrating further, the Speaker stated that upon the expiration of the tenure of the outgoing local government administration, the governor shall swear in the newly elected chairmen and vice chairmen of the councils, but where the governor is unable or fails to perform the duty, the House shall by resolution mandate judicial officers or magistrates to perform the task; stressing that the progressive intendment of the Bill cannot be overemphasized. 

In a similar development, the House gave the First  Reading to the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission (amendment) Bill, sponsored by Hon. Linda Somiari-Stewart, a member representing Okrika Constituency; which is a Bill for a Law to amend the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission Law No 2 of 2018.

Presenting the Bill, Hon. Linda Stewart submitted that the Bill seeks to amend Section 20 of the Principal Law, and when passed may be cited as the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission (Amendment) Law, 2024.

 

Eighteen-Eleven Media 

 

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