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Constitution Amendment: Reps Committee vote against state police



A house of representatives committee on constitution amendment has rejected a bill seeking to establish state police.

The bill sponsored by Onofiok Luke, a lawmaker from Akwa Ibom, and which has passed second reading at the lower legislative chamber in July 2021, seeks to move powers in section 214 (c) from the exclusive list to the concurrent list, to empower “both the national assembly and houses of assembly of states to legislate on police and other security matters”.

The bill was put to vote by the Deputy Speaker of the House, Idris Wase, who is the Chairman of the Committee, following a call by Fred Agbedi (PDP, Bayelsa) for the bill to be put to proper division. The voting by raising of hands.

While 14 members of the committee voted against the amendment to section 214 of the 1999 constitution which sought to establish federal police and state police, 11 others voted in support during a meeting with its consultants on Tuesday January 25 to consider the bill.

Dakas Dakas, a professor, who is the lead consultant to the committee, said state police could only be created if section 214 was voted on. Section 214 of the bill sought the establishment of federal and state police.

Muhammed Wudil, a lawmaker from Kano who spoke against the bill said;

“There are lots of things as regards the creation of state police. There is a lot of apprehension, most especially the nature of the country now; we are almost — in some cases divided and any governor can decide to take out whatever security measures against political opponents.”

Following the outcome of the voting, the bill will not be presented to the House for consideration.

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