Buhari Refuses To Sign Two Bills In Nigeria’s Transport Sector
President Muhammadu Buhari has declined assent to two bills – the National Transport Commission Bill 2018 and the Federal Roads Authority (Establishment) Bill 2018 – in the transport sector.
Buhari’s decision came in a letter to the National Assembly leadership read by the President of the Senate, Senator Bukola Saraki, at plenary on Wednesday.
According to him, some sections of the National Transport Commission Bill contained safety regulations that would duplicate the functions of existing transport agencies.
He said, “Safety regulatory provisions enshrined in some sections of the bill which are technical in nature fall within the purview of central legislation implemented by agencies like Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, Nigeria Ports Authority and therefore should be expunged from the bill.
“Two, the percentage of the amount to be retained by the agency from royalties collected under section 19 (2)(d) should be reduced from 10 to five per cent.
“Section 12 (9)(2)(d) stipulates that a portion of the proceeds from royalties collected by the authority empowered to collect royalties from transport service providers should not exceed 10 per cent which is collected by service providers and concessionaires.
“Three, section 19 (2)(f) which stipulates charge of three per cent freight tariff stabilisation fee on all imports and exports out of Nigeria including wet and dry cargoes should be amended and reduced from three per cent to one per cent.
“This is what is currently contained in the Nigerian Shippers Council legislation.”
On the Federal Roads Authority (Establishment) Bill 2018, the president said the proposed road sector regulator would usurp the supervisory power of the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing.
The president pointed out that the proposed agency would also render the “entire technical workforce of the supervisory ministry redundant”.
He argued that “the establishment of the road sector regulator as a separate and distinctive body in Part 6 of the bill is capable of rendering the entire technical workforce of the supervisory ministry redundant.
“The supervisory power of the ministry over the road sector would be taken over by the road sector regulator and will leave the ministry without the power to exercise its supervisory role.
“I feel the ministry would have little or no desirable role to play in the road sector.
“This is because ownership and management of roads would be vested in the road sector regulator such that the supervisory powers would be exercised by it, leaving the ministry without any clear statutory function.”