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Reps steps down laying, consideration of PIB conference report

Published by The Nation on Thu, 15 Jul 2021

By Tony Akowe, AbujaThe House of Representatives has stepped down the laying and consideration of the conference committee on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) after a rowdy session over reduction in the 5 percent earlier passed for host communities by the House.The report from the conference Committee between the House and Senate, which harmonised the two versions earlier passed, was to be laid and considered by the House on Thursday.However, tempers flared when news filtered into the Chamber before commencement of plenary that the conference committee recommended 3 percent as against the 5 percent passed by the House.The shouting match led the House into an emergency Executive session, which lasted for almost one hour.However, when Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila called chairman of the Conference Committee from the House and Chief Whip, Mohammed Mongunu to lay the report, the lawmaker sought the permission of the House to step down the laying of the report.The laying of the report and eventual consideration was stepped down.Although newsmen were not informed what transpired at the Executive session, it was evident the suspension announced by the Chief Whip was part of outcome of the executive session.While addressing his colleagues before they closed for the session, Gbajabiamiala announced the PIB will be forwarded to President Muhammadu Buhari for signing into law after proper harmonisation.
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