#COVID19: We didn’t suspend plenary over possible spread — Reps

by on March 4, 2020

The House of Representatives on Tuesday dismissed reports that it has suspended plenary for two weeks over the possible spread of coronavirus.

In a statement issued by its spokesman, Benjami Okezie Kalu, the house said that the two weeks suspension of plenary has not commenced.

The decision to suspend the plenary, Okezie insisted is subject to the lawmakers’ consideration.

He stated that the House would continue with its legislative duties on Wednesday.

According to the House spokesman, the lawmakers considered a motion on the urgent need for emergency response and need to contain the deadly coronavirus in Nigeria during its Tuesday plenary.

The motion, according to him, was thoroughly debated and passed by the House

Okezie said: “Some of the prayers include the need for the leadership of the National Assembly to set up an ad-hoc committee to liaise with the relevant health agencies to ensure efforts to combat the virus are intensified.

“The House also called for a better orientation of the disease by the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture through relevant media outfits to keep Nigerians abreast of the situation.

“An amendment to the prayers of the motion calling on the House to suspend plenary for two weeks to work and contribute its legislative efforts by helping to sensitize constituents on the coronavirus and how it is being handled was also adopted.

“The amendment also urged the management of the National Assembly to put measures in place to ensure the virus does not find a place to fester in the National Assembly.

“It is, however, necessary to clarify that the two weeks suspension of plenary has not commenced and is subject to reconsideration by the House.

“The leadership of the House is to meet and consider the arrangement necessary before a date can be fixed for the sensitization of constituents by their respective lawmakers.

“Therefore, the business of lawmaking continues on Wednesday March 4, 2020.”

The House had reportedly resolved to proceed on a two weeks break over a possible spread of coronavirus.

The lawmakers, according to reports, said the suspension is to enable the management to install facilities to screen and detect the deadly virus.

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