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BREAKING: Senate Passes South-East Development Commission Bill

The  South-East Development Commission (SEDC) Bill has been passed by the Nigerian Senate.

The landmark legislation aimed at addressing infrastructure deficits and promoting economic growth in the South-East region of the Country was read for the third time on Thursday.

The Bill will address the long-standing developmental challenges faced by the region, particularly in the aftermath of the Nigerian Civil War. The commission will be able to receive and manage funds allocated from the Federation Account for the reconstruction and rehabilitation of roads, housing, and other critical infrastructure damaged during the conflict.

The passage of the SEDC Bill follows the consideration of a report on the establishment of the commission, presented by Senate Leader, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele. It was initially presented by the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Benjamin Kalu, and unanimously passed by the House on December 21, 2023.

Upon passage by both chambers of the National Assembly, a Conference Committee will be established to reconcile any differences before the bill is transmitted to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for assent.

The commission will be tasked with conceiving, planning, and implementing projects and programs for sustainable development, including transportation, healthcare, education, agriculture, and housing. It will also collaborate with relevant stakeholders to address ecological and environmental issues, promote sound resource management, and ensure accountability in project implementation.

Senate President, Senator Godswill Akpabio, also hailed the passage of the bill, emphasizing its significance in addressing the region’s development needs and fostering unity and cohesion in the country.

“It’s a very important bill passed by this 10th Senate, this bill addresses all the fears of our brothers and sisters from the South East.

“I want to say congratulations. I pray this commission will bring a lot of development to the South-east and we will assist you to stop any form of agitation and bring peace to your region. When harmonized, it will address the fears of the south-east.”, he said.

 

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