Revealed: How Speaker Dogara Sped Up The Passage Of The Sharia Bill Through Second Reading
Abdullahi Salame, representing Gwadabawa/Illela federal constituency, Sokoto State, has finally revealed why he sponsored the controversial Sharia bill.
Salame revealed that he was advised by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, to speed up the bill because it the bill could draw public outrage.
Salame, who revealed this in an interview with Premium Times, said: “I wrote the bill. I presented it. It was in the gazette. It went through first reading and second reading. So, the Speaker, in his wisdom — you know there are some issues that is not necessary to publicly discuss them or deliberate on them to avoid problems– asked me not to make noise about it,”
When contacted by Premium Times, the Deputy chairman, House committee on media and publicity, Jonathan Gbefwi, issued the statement below:
The Bill came up on the floor and was automatically referred to the ad-hoc committee on constitution review.
There was no debate on it either for or against because the House is a democratic representatives chamber of the Nigerian people
Even if five people only have an issue with any section of the Constitution, the House will give it a listening ear.
The ad-hoc committee on Constitution review has one member per state and women and other representation.
The precedence is that it is in this committee that these kind of matters are thrashed out.
Any bill that has potentials to divide the country on religious or tribal lines or to reopen settled constitutional issues will most likely fail in the committee.
It should be noted that constitutional review bills are special bills that undergo many stages unlike an ordinary bill.
These include committee stage, plenary stage for voting by 2/3rd of the House, 2/3rd of all the state Houses of Assembly before it comes back again to the National Assembly for voting again and finally it must receive presidential assent.
We are still at a very early stage in the process and Nigerians should not worry about bills of this nature as the House has shown over the years to be the protector of Nigerians’ national unity and interest.
Hon. Jonathan Gaza Gbefwi
Houss Committee on Media and Publicity.