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Reps seek powers to confirm ministerial nominees

By Tordue Salem

ABUJA—The House of Representatives yesterday took a Bill seeking to level it up with the Senate on confirmation of ministerial nominees through second reading.

Besides confirmatory powers, the legislation also seeks to compel the Presidency to be forwarding names of nominees with their designated portfolios attached, so as to guide the screening process.

In his lead debate Mr. Friday Itulah, representing PDP Esan, Edo State argued that besides desirability and reasonability of placing the Green Chamber on the same footing with its Senate counterpart on the screening of “persons to serve our Nation”, the President, “as it obtains in the United States’’, must forward names of nominees with the portfolios they are supposed to handle”, as according to him, that will help the parliament decide which questions to direct at them.

He recalled with regrets the take-a-bow-and-go dramas that have played out in the Senate during ministerial screenings.

Sections 147 and 148 of the 1999 Constitution gives the President the powers to nominate and forward to the Senate names of people to fill a cabinet posts.

Though the Motion after its passage was referred to the Committee on Governmental Affairs, it may require an amendment of some sections of the Constitution to effect the changes being sought by the House.


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