The Senate on Tuesday, removed the power generation, transmission and distribution from the exclusive legislative list in the ongoing constitutional review exercise.
The members of the upper legislative chamber passed a bill for an Act to alter the provisions of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to allow states to generate, transmit and distribute electricity in area covered by the National Grid and for related matters.
The bill was passed during plenary on Tuesday with 90 senators voting in favour of the bill and no dissenting voice during its consideration.
This is coming barely a day after reports that the Governors under the aegis of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) in a letter dated February 22, rejected the electricity bill being considered by the senate which seeks to treat the federation as a single electricity sector and limits state governments from building electricity infrastructure in areas that are not covered by the national grid.
The newly passed legislation if eventually passed by two-thirds of the state houses of assembly and eventually signed by the president, will be a huge victory for Nigerians and various stakeholders who had advocated for the decentralization of the power sector and its removal from the exclusive legislative list to attract more investments.
Rejection of immunity clause
Meanwhile, the Senate rejected a bill seeking to grant immunity to the leadership of the legislature and the head of the judiciary.
The members of the upper legislative chamber had rejected a bill for an Act to alter the provisions of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, to expand immunity to the legislative and judicial arms of government, and for other related matters, with 50 senators voting against it, 29 voting in favour of it and 1 abstaining.
This will also come as a relief to a lot of Nigerians and stakeholders who have advocated for the removal of the immunity clause in the country’s constitution rather than expanding it.