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Bill to register lobbyists passes second reading

By Henry Umoru & Joseph Erunke
ABUJA- MOVES by the Senate to register lobbyists in Nigeria to help shape public policy by properly investigating facts that would help the legislator to take a better position in law making process on Wednesday scaled second reading.

Presenting the Bill titled, ” A Bill for an Act for the Regulation and Registration of Lobbyists in Nigeria and for other matters connected there with, 2016,”, Senator Dino Melaye, All Progressives Congress, APC, Kogi West noted that when passed, the bill would create stricter registration requirement for lobbyists; require lobbyists to disclose how much they make and spend on lobbying as well as ban lobbyists from paying for gifts and food as a means of inducement.

According to Melaye, the Bill when passed, will also impose a time period before a legislature can become a lobbyist; create ethics oversight by establishing Ethics Commissions and Legislative Ethics Committee and give oversight Agencies more power to investigate violation of ethics laws.

Referring the bill to Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, with four weeks to report back to the red chambers, Senate President Bukola Saraki who described the bill as very timely, stressed that it would help strengthen the work of the legislative arm of government.


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