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…says nine bills were passed in the last one year 

…decries Tim Owhefere’s death 

By Festus Ahon, ASABA –

SPEAKER of the Delta State House of Assembly, Chief Sherrif Oborevwori, Thursday, reiterated the determination of the House to continually strive to ensure total commitment and sense of accountability to facilitate the implementation of government’s policies and programs in the state.

Speaking at a media briefing to commemorate the Second Anniversary of the seventh Assembly at the Legislators quarters, Oborevwori commended the State Governor, Senator  Ifeanyi Okowa for his support and respect for the legislature as an arm of government.

He said: “Expectedly, we are moving into the Third Session with a lot of hope and confidence. I say this because the world is gradually coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic, having rolled out vaccines to mitigate the spread of the virus. 

“Recall that the Second Session began at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Delta State House of Assembly was not excluded from the disruptions caused by the pandemic globally. 

“However, by the special grace of God, we pulled through and here we are, determined more than ever to continue to improve on our previous performance. 

“On this note, may I appreciate God Almighty for giving us sound mind, good health and divine wisdom to weather the storm of COVID-19 and for making it possible for us to once again brief the media on the significant achievements the House recorded in the last twelve months.

“Sadly though, in this same period under review, the Delta State House of Assembly lost one of its finest and very experienced lawmaker in the person of late Mr Tim Kome Owhefere, KSC, who until his death on January 27th, was the Majority Leader of the House. His demise has remained a huge loss to the House till date. May his gentle soul continue to rest in perfect peace.

“It is heartwarming to note that we are making steady progress every other day.  We started on a good note and I have no doubt in my mind that by the special grace of God we are going to finish strong.  

“Let me start by commending our Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa for his support and respect for the Legislature as an arm of government. As a former Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, he has not only demonstrated good leadership by honouring the principles of separation of powers but also a champion of financial autonomy for all the arms of government in the State. 

“This majorly has accounted for the robust and harmonious working relationship between the Executive and the Legislature. In the same vein, I must thank Deltans whose love and support have been very inspiring. The task no doubt has been very challenging but with the cooperation of my colleagues, management and staff of the Assembly, we have achieved tremendous success.”

Disclosing that a total of 14 bills and 34 motions were received by the House, he said: “Nine were Executive Bills, while five were Private Member Bills. Out of the 14 bills, nine have been passed and eight were given assent by the Governor. The remaining five Bills are still undergoing legislative consideration in the House.

“One remarkable feat among the Bills passed and assented to, is the passage and establishment of the three new Universities in the State. This is to cater for our qualified teaming youths that wished to further their education to tertiary level but were not getting admissions due to limited admission spaces.   

“The Delta State House of Assembly is mindful of the policies and programmes of the State Government towards the development of the State. Accordingly, requests from the Executive bothering on the welfare and economic wellbeing of Deltans are treated speedily after thorough consideration by Members. This accounted for the total number of 34 Motions and Resolutions in the period under review”.

On training and capacity building, the Speaker said: “One of the commitments of the Leadership of the 7th Assembly is to build a virile and competent workforce in the Assembly. At the inauguration of the 7th Assembly, it was resolved that there must be deliberate effort to build the capacity of Members, aides and staff of the Assembly for quality service delivery. 

“In the period under review, series of workshops, retreats and training programmes were organized to equip Honourable Members, Management and staff of the Assembly to enhance their productivity and efficiency in discharge of their duties. I am glad to inform you that the gains and benefits of the trainings reflected in no small measure in the quality of debate during plenary.” 

On industrial harmony, Oborevwori said:

“the Delta State House of Assembly enjoys a good working relationship with the workers’ union, the Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria, PASAN. There is a high level of mutual respect between the Leadership of the House and the Union. In the Assembly, every labour related issue is addressed through dialogue, without resorting to confrontation. 

“I want to seize this opportunity to specially commend PASAN for resorting to negotiation instead of violence in addressing the issues of the implementation of the financial autonomy for the Legislature.  

“Let me at this point commend my honourable and distinguished colleagues for their cooperation thus far. I will say from the depth of my heart that I am eternally grateful for the quality advice and the unwavering support you provided for me for the modest achievements in our Second Session of the 7th Assembly. 

“Notwithstanding that the Second Session of the Seventh Assembly was birthed in turbulence occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic and general meltdown in economic activities, including lingering security challenges that are confronting us as a nation, the House made modest progress in its mandate areas of lawmaking, representation and oversight.

“As we begin a new Session today, we pray that the challenges of the Second Session should not repeat itself to enable the House to comprehensively provide good governance and deepen the tenets of democracy to the benefits of the good and peace-loving people of Delta State.

“Finally, I will like to commend the management and staff of the Assembly for their dedication and commitment to duty which has helped in the success recorded thus far.

“It is our desire to make Delta State House of Assembly a rallying point for all constituents who have elected us to serve them. We will remain committed to service and democracy. We will continue to strive with total commitment and sense of accountability to facilitate the implementation of the Okowa Administration policies and programmes.”

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