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Senate Passes NHIS, PIGB, INEC Bills

The Senate, on Wednesday, during plenary passed the National Health Insurance (NHIS) Act, 2003 (Repeal and Re-enactment) Bill 2019, the petroleum industry governance bill (PIGB) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) act 2010 (amendment) bill 2019.

Recall that President Muhammadu Buhari had initially rejected the bills claiming they had legal, constitutional and drafting issues after which the senate set up a technical committee to review the bills.

However, the bills were being passed today after Ahmad Lawan, senate leader, moved a motion and referred for the committee of the whole for consideration.

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After the technical committee effected corrections, the senators considered the clauses of each of the bills and passed them.

Reacting to the bill’s passage, Senate President Bukola Saraki said the action of the senate on the NHIS bill is to ensure that Nigerians have basic healthcare.

Saraki congratulated the chairman of Senate Health Committee, Senator Lanre Tejuoso; and all those who worked on the bill saying, “it is a massive achievement towards achieving universal coverage in the country.”

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On the passage of the INEC bill, he said, “It’s a great day for our democracy, as today, we passed a new and much-improved version of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Amendment Bill.”

Other bills passed by the senate are the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme (amendment) bill 2019 and the National Institute for Hospitality and Tourism bill 2019, National Research and Innovation Council bill 2019, Stamp Duties act (amendment) bill 2019 and National Agricultural Seed Council bill 2019.

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