Reps pass maritime security trust fund bill for second reading

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The House of Representatives on Wednesday passed for second reading a bill to establish the Nigerian maritime security trust fund.

Sponsored by Yusuf Gagdi who represents the Panshi/Kanam federal constituency of Plateau State, the bill is titled “The Bill for an Act to establish Nigerian Maritime Security Trust Fund and other matters related thereto (2020)”.

Noting the importance of the bill, all contributors to the debate lend their voices to the establishment of the fund and urge the House to pass the bill into law without any delay. The bill was first introduced on March 25, 2021.

Leading the debate on the general principle of the bill, Gagdi, who also chairs the House Committee on Navy, said the trust when established will provide special funds for training and retraining of naval personnel for optimum productivity, as well as funding for equipment and machinery that will aid the seamless protection of our waterways by the Nigerian Navy. He said it will also guarantee a robust economic development of the country.

The lawmaker stated that it was imperative that the Nigerian Navy was sufficiently equipped and routinely trained to curb the excesses of pirates, oil bunkers and other illegal activities on the waterways that hamper economic development since the mainstay of the Nigerian economy (oil) is majorly sourced and moved through the waterways while the largest chunk of our import and export of other goods are carried out through the seas.

Receiving favourable contributions from some other members of the House, the bill was eventually voted for a second reading by the majority.