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Sunday, April 14, 2024

Senate Passes Second Reading of Bill to Establish South-west Development Commission

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A bill seeking to establish the South-west Development Commission (SWDC) has passed second reading at the senate.

The bill was sponsored by the senator representing Ogun East, Gbenga Daniel.

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It was read the second time in the Senate on Wednesday and referred to the Committee on Special Duties.

The Senate President, Godswill Akpabio, subsequently directed the committee to report back to the Senate within four weeks.

Mr Daniel, while leading a debate on the bill, said when the commission is established, it will be responsible for the management of funds allocated by the federal government for capital projects in the South-west region.

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“This Bill essentially aims to establish a Commission for the South West region that will be charged with the responsibility amongst others, to receive and manage funds allocated by the Federal Government for the construction, reconstruction and rehabilitation of roads, houses and other infrastructural damages suffered by the region and the need to tackle the ecological problems and any other related environmental or developmental challenges in the South-west states and for related matters.

“The South-western part of Nigeria, made up of Lagos, Ekiti, Ondo, Osun and Oyo states, is a melting pot with all ethnic groups of Nigeria living in peace and harmony. These same coastal issues are affecting the riverine areas of Ondo and Ogun states as well, hence the need to holistically revamp the infrastructural and security deficits of the region,” Mr Daniel, a former governor of Ogun State, said.

The bill is divided into six parts (with 27 sections) and captured the following:

i. Establishment of the South West Development Commission;

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ii. Functions of the Commission;

iii. Structure of the Commission;

iv. Staff of the Commission;

v. Financial provisions; and

vi. Miscellaneous provisions.

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