The Upper Chamber of the Nigerian legislature, the House of Senates have on Tuesday introduced its own bill similar to the House of Representatives controversial Infectious Disease Control Bill which has passed through first and second reading in the House of Representatives.
The bill was sponsored by Senator Chukwuka Utazi representing Enugu North Senatorial district and also the Chairman of Senate Committee on Health.
Though the bill scaled first reading, Ex-Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, also from Enugu State and of the Peoples Democratic Party ironically kicked against the bill after it passed the first reading.
Expressing his reservations on the bill, Ekweremadu demanded for the a Gazetted copy of the bill in line with the tradition of legislative debate on bills.
Ekweremadu who relied on Order 41 of the Senate Standing Rules, said the Bill is already generating controversies in the House of Representatives.
He insisted that as a senator, he has the privilege of going through the Bill before being read for the second time.
Ekweremadu said: “I rely on Order 41 of the Senate Standing Rule. As a senator, I am entitled to know the details of this Bill.
“We want to have copies of the gazetted copies. There is controversy over the same Bill in the House of Representatives.
“We don’t want to have the same issue here. We need to be guided to avoid any backlash. I need to read it and prepare ahead of time.”
Senate President, Ahmad Lawan directed the Secretariat of the Senate to make copies of the Bill available to all Senators.
He ruled that the second reading of the Bill will take place next week after Senators must have the Bill.
Lawan said: “The copies are ready and everybody will get a copy. We are not taking the second reading immediately. That will be done next week. So, members will have the time to read the contents of the Bill.”