Sponsor of Hate Speech Bill, on his own – Senate

Twenty four hours after passing for first reading, the bill seeking for establishment of National Commission for Prohibition of Hate Speeches , the Senate Wednesday , declared that the sponsor of the bill , Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi ( APC Kano North), is on his own. 

The Upper legislative chamber said the bill like other ones, will be subjected to laid down legislative processes  in determining its acceptability or  otherwise in terms  of consideration or rejection  at the stages of second or third reading .

Reacting to the backlash that has been trailing the bill from the media and the general public since Tuesday, when it was passed for first reading , the new Spokesman of the Senate , Senator Godiya Akwashiki (APC Nasarawa North), said it was too early to attach the bill to the Senate since it has not been debated for second reading.

Akwashiki who made the clarification at an interactive session with journalists covering the Senate , said : ” We have a process of enacting a law or an act in the National Assembly or in the state Assembly.

“The process starts with the First reading, when the Leader of the Senate will read it for the first time.

The Second reading is taken after the bill has been subjected to debate on the floor of the Senate. 

“Once a bill scale second reading,  it has to go to the committee and would return to the house again.

If it is a bill that will represent the wishes and interest of Nigerians,  it will scale second reading. If it is a bill that will create hardship for the people of Nigeria and crisis, it will be killed on the floor of the Senate by senators when it comes for second reading

“I  want to urge Nigerians to exercise patience with me Senate because it is not wise for me nor legally right for me to discuss a bill that has not been mentioned for the second time on the floor of the Senate. 

“When the bill comes for second reading,  then you will know where it is heading or what the Senate intends to do. I want to assure you that even if the bill scale second reading on the floor of the Senate and the public moves against it , it will not survive because  we are working for the progress and betterment of Nigerians.”

It would be recalled that the upper legislative chamber was last year forced to drop its first attempt to enact the law following massive public outcry that ensued after it was widely reported  in the media  particularly on the death penalty , it stipulates for offenders of hate speeches .

However , efforts made by our Reporter to get reaction of the Sponsor of the bill , Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi on condemnations trailing the proposed legislation proved abortive , as he refused to comment on the ranging issue .

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