…About 1000 Beneficiaries have Free Surgical Operation
… Journey of 9th National Assembly has not been so easy, but very sucesseful
… Condition of IDPs across the country, pathetic
BY OBUTE JAMES
A member of the House of Representatives representing Gwandu/Aliero/Jega Federal Constituency of Kebbi State, Hon. Muhammad Umar Jega said over 3000 of his constituents benefited from his free medical outreach programme within the last one year of the 9th National Assembly
Jega who is the Chairman, House Committee on Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs told THE LEGISLATURE in an interview that people are asset to every politician hence the need to take care of them.
According to him, the medical outreach programme which he embarked on allowed about 3000 persons to get free medical treatment while about 500 beneficiaries of the programme had eye surgery operation. About 500 people also had free surgical operation for different ailments such as hernia, appendicitis, hydrocele, lipoma etc.
Jega said his free medical outreach programme was done in collaboration with Federal Medical Centre Birnin Kebbi, Kebbi State.
Jega saud his committee within the last one year of the 9th National Assembly has taken several steps towards addressing the challenges of the internally displaced persons.
“These are people displaced by insurgency, armed banditry, herdsmen/farmers clashes, flood among other things. They are homeless and in terrible condition as family members are scattered without knowing the whereabouts of each other,” Jega said.
According to him, improved security across the country will enable the displaced persons go back to their homes and be united with their family members.
Speaking on the 9th National Assembly, Jega said “the journey has not been so easy but it is very successful.”
He said no meaningful progress will place in the atmosphere of crisis, adding that the harmony that exists between the Legislature and the Executive Arms of government has led to a lot of progress.
MOTIONS AND BILLS SPONSORED BY HON. UMAR JEGA
Within the first year of the 9th National Assembly, Jega made several contributions at the floor of the House of Representatives including contribution to bills and motions. He also presented several motions, sponsored and co-sponsored bills.
One of such motions by Mohammad Umar Jega is titled:
“URGENT NEED TO RE-OPEN AND EXTEND REGISTRATION AND REDEEMING OF GROWTH ENHANCEMENT SUPPORT SCHEME (GESS) IN KEBBI STATE AND TO ENSURE ITS WIDER COVERAGE.”
The motion which was brought pursuant to Order Viii Rule 4 – Matters of Urgent Public Importance sought for a House resolution directing the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development to immediately restore the GES programme and lift the suspension to reach the targeted farmers, not only in Kebbi state but also in other states that are interested.
Following Jega’s motion the House also resolved to direct the Minister of Agriculture to simplify the registration process to make the programme more accessible to eligible farmers.
The House also urged the Federal Executive Council to extend the life span of the programme for more than 4 years under the extant policy in recognition of its significance towards agricultural development. which is the highest employer of labour and major focus of the administration.
The mandated the committee on Agricultural services to ensure compliance and report back to the house within four weeks.
Parts of the motion read below: “House notes that: Kebbi state has made a tremendous progress in the production of rice, wheat and other vegetables crops for both dry and wet season production towards self sufficiency in food production and food security for the nation.
“Also Notes that: Growth Enhancement Support Scheme (GESS) is a 4 year programme initiated and managed by Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development for growth and enhancement of agricultural activities.”
“The programme was launched in kebbi state barely one year ago designed for a pragmatic shift within the existing fertilizer market stabilization programme and it puts, through the provision of series of incentives to encourage the critical actors in the fertilizer value chain to work together to improve productivity, household food security and income of famers.
The specific goals of the programme include Target 5 million farmers in each year for 4 years that will receive GESS in their mobile phone directly totalling 20 million farmers at the end of 4 years;
To provide support directly to farmers to enable them procure agricultural inputs at affordable prices, at the right time and place; To increase productivity of farmers across the length and breadth of the country through increased use of fertilize I. e. 50kg/ha from 13kg/ha, and Change the role of Government from direct procurement and distribution of fertilizer to a facilitator of procurement, regulator of fertilizer quality and catalyst of active private sector participation in the fertilizer value chain.”
“Further aware that: the Federal Ministry of Finance has signed MOU with banks and Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development for Provision of guarantee on 70% of the credit provided by banks participating in the scheme;
“Concerned that :when the programme was launched in kebbi state, the registration was too cumbersome, characterized with internet network problem and other official formalities, which made the number of registered persons too small to make a reasonable impact on fertilizer supply and other agro-allied products;
“Worried that: out of thousands registered for the scheme in various centers across the state, those given the inputs in many of the centers are less than10% and the exercise for this year’s dry-season farming is now suspended by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural development rendering many farmers stranded and helpless across the state.
“Further worried that: despite the huge resources expended in this programme by the federal government, private sector and private individuals in realizing the objectives of this programme the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, unilaterally terminated this year’s dry season programme without realizing up to 10% disbursement of the inputs to the generality of the farmers.
“Disturbed that: the fate of many trucks of fertilizer and other agro-allied products received by the programme is unknown as the farmers in the state including those who are luckily registered with programme are left in confusion;
“Further disturbed that: the significance of the programme which contributed to the development of agriculture in Nigeria, particularly in reducing the rate of importation of agricultural produce and facilitation of export of same agricultural produce such as rice, soya beans and corn may be lost due to non- implementation of the lofty benefits of the programme.”
i. Direct the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development to immediately restore the programme and lift the suspension to reach the targeted farmers, not only in Kebbi state but also in other states that are interested;
ii. Direct the Minister of Agriculture to simplify the registration process to make the programme more accessible to eligible farmers; and
iii. Urge the Federal Executive Council to extend the life span of the programme for more than 4 years under the extant policy in recognition of its significance towards agricultural development. Which is the highest employer of labour and major focus of this administration.
iv. Mandate the committee on Agricultural services to ensure compliance and report back to the house within four weeks.”
URGENT NEED FOR SPECIAL INTERVENTION TO CURTAIL THE IMPACT OF CORONAVIRUS COVID-19 ON IDPs HEALTH AND LIVELIHOODS. is also another motion moved by Hon. Umar Jega
The House Resolution following Hon. Muhammad Umar Jega’s motion urged the Federal Government to urgently intervene and made special grant of five Billion Naira to National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and internally Displaced Person to curtail the impact of COVID-19 pandemic in the Nation IDPs camp.
Parts of the motion read below:
“There are in Nigeria today about 2.5 million internally displaced persons living in over 290 crowded camps and host communities.
“Be informed that
The displacement in the county are caused by
1. The Boko Haram insurgency in the North East.
2. The conflict between herders and farmers
3. The activities of the Armed Bandits and cattle rustlers
4. Communal clashes
5. Natural disasters like flooding and fire outbreak.
“Also informed that the IDPs live in densely populated camps.The overcrowdiness in these camps make social distancing all but, impossible, access to drinking water and sanitation are virtually unavailable, this make the containment of the pandemic very serious and desirable.
“Aware that the IDPs (people fleeing disasters) are the most vulnerable and most of them are with strained and fragile Health conditions.
“Worried that the current situation with regards to COVID-19 there is an apparent need for urgent Federal Government special intervention in the following areas.
a. Provision of food
b. Provision of non- food but essential items such as medicine
c. Face masks
d. Hand Sanitizers
e. Soap, detergents and buckets
“Concerned that sensitization programme across the camps in the country to educate the IDPs on basic hygiene become necessary. We can only imagine what it would look like for the Men, Women and Children living in displacement camps, if the pandemic strikes in any of the overcrowded camps in the country.
The House resolve to.
“Urge the Federal Government to urgently intervene and made special grant of five Billion Naira to National Commission for refugees, Migrants and internally Displaced person to curtail the impact of COVID-19 pandemic in the Nation IDPs camp.”
The House following this motion mandated the committee on IDPs to ensure judicious use of the fund.
A BILL FOR AN ACT TO ESTABLISH THE CHARTERED INSTITUTE OF PROFESSIONAL SECRETARIAL STAFF OF NIGERIA: AND FOR RELATED MATTERS is one of the bills he sponsored HON. Muhammad Umar Jega
Leading the debate before the bill passed Second Reading, Jega said if the bill is passed into law it will standardize the practice of Secretarial Profession in Nigeria; enforce a code of ethics in the profession in Nigeria and provide a legal framework on discipline, rules, ethical status of secretarial professionals in Nigeria.
“The Rt. Hon. Speaker, Hon. Members the secretarial Profession is as old as any career structure in Nigeria. To give a cheque history of development of the Professional Secretarial which started before early 1970’s, as a training but unregulated body. In the 1970’s, Secretarial Institutes sprang up with few acquiring government recognition and accreditation.
“Getting to the 1980’s some Polytechnics work out the training of Secretarial Practitioners thereby creating a window for advancement of the profession. Also the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and the University of port-Harcourt were the first set of Universities to offer Secretarial Studies at degree levels in the country.
:Today, Secretarial Studies are offered AT Master’s degree and Ph.D. Levels. Transitionally and with the integration of ICT and Computer into the world of documentation, the advancement in the profession earned it a new name: Office Technology and Management (OTM) as accredited by the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE).
“Furthermore, admission requirement into the University/Polytechnic are equally same as any management course requirement. Practically, and as obtainable, graduates of Secretarial studies or Office Technology Management (OTM) are also placed as Administrative Officers in some establishment.
“It is saddening to note that despite all the foregoing advancement, which has naturally transform Secretarial practice from mere traditional role to modern roles, accommodating ICT and general administration, its practitioners are still unregulated and uncertified thereby reducing the profession to nothing. In order to standardize the profession of Secretarial studies, it will be in the best interest of the profession to regulate the profession of Secretarial Studies by means of a legal framework, hence the Bill.”
“The essence of CIPSSON Bill:
The Bill when passed into law, will seek to:
[i] standardize the practice of Secretarial Profession in Nigeria;
[ii] enforce a code of ethics in the profession in Nigeria;
[iii] provide a legal framework on discipline, rules, ethical status of secretarial professionals in Nigeria;
[iv] provide a framework on placement of secretarial professionals in line with advancement in the profession;
[v] regulate generally secretarial profession in Nigeria;
[vi] accommodate other cadres that were left out in any other arrangement; and
[vii] assist in generating revenue for all tiers of government in Nigeria.
“The Rt Hon. Speaker, Hon Members item 49 of the Second Schedule to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1990 (as amended) specifically empowered the National Assembly to allow
for establishment of professional occupations as may be designated by the National Assembly.
The implication of the cited constitutional provision is to allow for the existence bodies for the purpose of regulating Secretarial reporting.
The Rt.Hon. Speaker, Hon Members, I therefore call for your support to allow that the Bill be read a Second time”
The was read for second time and referred to the relevant committee for further legislative actions.