…As Seme Customs intercepts 55 fairly-used vehicles, following Border Closure***
The Senate on Wednesday urged the Nigerian Navy to establish a naval base in Makun Onu in Ogun to tackle the rising cases of kidnapping of residents in the state.
The call by the Senate followed a motion brought by Sen. Olalekan Mustapha (APC Ogun) on the rising rate of kidnapping of residents of Ogun riverine areas.
Presenting the motion at plenary, Mustapha said that 11 persons had been kidnapped in the area between Aug. 11 and October 2019.
He said that following the spate of kidnapping and other criminal activities in the area, many residents had fled the zone for fear of being kidnapped.
According to the lawmaker, the activities of kidnappers has caused untold hardship for Ogun residents.
Sen. Ibikunle Amosun (APC Ogun), who seconded the motion, noted that kidnapping in Ogun East should be a concern to all and that the police should be assisted to tackle the menace.
He said that the activities of kidnappers had resulted in the relocation of some residents of the area.
Also, Sen. James Manager (PDP Delta) said that the motion and prayers was not only for Ogun but for the entire country.
Manager said that the Niger Delta zone was also not free from the challenge, while calling for support for the motion.
Following the contributions, the Senate, after a unanimous affirmation of a voice vote, urged the Federal Government to direct the Inspector-General of Police to step up security in the affected communities in the state.
The Senate also urged the Federal Government to make helicopters available to help tackle the menace of kidnapping and other criminal activities.
In his remark, the President of the Senate, Dr Ahmad Lawan, said that he had held meetings with security agencies on how best to mitigate insecurity in the country.
Lawan said that there was the urgent need to ensure adequate security to promote and attract investment and investors in the country.
He said that there was need to evolve other means of raising funds to fight insecurity.
He added that the executive arm of government was committed to tackling the security challenge in the country.
Lawan called for the provision of drones to track down perpetrators of crimes in the country.
The Senate also considered the second reading of the Finance Bill 2019.
The bill, which was first read on Oct. 5 at plenary, is designed to make for incremental changes to Nigeria tax and fiscal law and other related matters.
The bill sponsored by Sen. Abdullahi Abubakar (APC Kebbi), aims at facilitating the process of sourcing for revenue to fund the budget.
The Senate also considered for second reading a Bill for an Act to Prevent, Prohibit and Redress Sexual Harassment of Students in Tertiary Educational Institutions and for other matters connected therewith (2019).
The bill was sponsored by Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege (APC Delta).
Omo-Agege, while presenting the bill for the second reading, said that there was need to put a legal instrument in place to protect students from sexual harassment by the educators.
Other bills that passed second reading are Bill for an Act for Establishment of Federal University of Education, Kontagora and other matters connected therewith (2019) sponsored by Sen. Sabi Abdullahi (APC Niger).
The Senate also considered for first reading 11 bills at plenary.
The bills are Terrorism Prevention and Prohibition Establishment Bill 2019 sponsored by Sen. Istifanus Dun ( APC Plateau), Money Laundering Prohibition Act Amendments Bill (2019) sponsored by Sen. Ezenwa Franchise (APC Imo).
Some other bills considered are the Fiscal Responsibility Commission Establishment Bill (2019) sponsored by Sen. Aishatu Ahmed (APC Adamawa), among others.
In the meantime, the Seme Command of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on Wednesday said it had intercepted 55 fairly-used vehicles smuggled into the country since the border closure on August 20 this year.
The Customs Spokesman in Seme, Abdullahi Hussaini, said in a statement that the seizure was part of the tremendous achievements recorded by the command in its anti-smuggling operations.
“The command within the period of the exercise intercepted 55 fairly used smuggled vehicles with DPV values worth millions of naira,” the customs spokesman said.
Hussaini described as baseless and unfounded reports on social media alleging that officers were collecting money in order to allow passage of fairly-used vehicles into the country despite the border drill.
He urged members of the public with tangible evidence that could assist the Command to tackle any recalcitrant to come forward for the benefit of all.
Hussaini also advised social media users to do proper investigation before making such serious allegations in order not to dampen the morale of officers in the discharge of their duties.
He said NCS has introduced palliatives to help those whose vehicles were impounded or without duty and were willing to pay duty to approach the nearest Federal Operations Unit to the pay their duty.