There was a mild drama in the Senate yesterday as some Senators staged a walkout apparently to protest the rejection of a Bill for an Act to make provisions for Federal Grants to Lagos State in recognition of its strategic socio-economic significance.
The Bill, which was sponsored by Senator Oluremi Tinubu (Lagos Central), was to be read for a second time after a debate but was jettisoned by the majority Senators when it was put to question by the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided at plenary.
Among the lawmakers sighted by LEADERSHIP reporter, who walked out of the Red Chamber after the Bill was rejected, include Senators Sam Anyanwu (PDP, Imo), Andy Uba (PDP, Anambra), Abiodun Olujimi (PDP, Ekiti) and others.
The chamber was also thrown into a rowdy session over the development and it took Ekweremadu close to 10 minutes to restore normalcy.
Earlier, leading the debate, Senator Tinubu urged her colleagues to support the Bill so as to uplift the status of Lagos being the commercial nerve of the country.
“As a city which caters to the welfare of residents and visitors, Lagos is placed under a huge strain that affects its infrastructure and as welfare implications for residents and transient citizens of other states in Nigeria. Many Nigerians travelling to Lagos experienced traffic congestion because of pressures on the road. Other problems faced in Lagos include overcrowding, emergence of slumps, over stretched healthcare facilities, decrease productivity because of hours lost in traffic, environmental challenges.
“The Bill aims to remedy the remaining problems faced by residents and visitors in Lagos by empowering the federal government to make provisions for economic assistance through grants as provided for under section 164 sub-section (1) of the 1999 Constitution as amended,” Tinubu argued.
BY BODE GBADEBO and MBACHU GODWIN NNANNA,