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Bill to repeal Police Act passes second reading

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A  Bill for an Act to Repeal the Police Act and enact Nigeria Police Bill has passed second reading in the House of Representatives.

The Bill was sponsored and presented on Wednesday by Yusuf Gagdi (APC, Plateau) during plenary presided over by Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila.

The presentation of the Bill was initially stepped down due to the absence of Gagdi, after the House resumed sitting from its break at 1:17 p.m.

The Ninth House introduced a 15-minute tea break for health reasons.

Gbajabiamila warned members to take the business of the House seriously and resume sitting at the agreed time.

The sponsor of the Bill showed up and appealed to the House to move a motion to enable him present the Bill.

The Bill is for an Act to Repeal the Police Act, Cap. P19, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 and Enact the Nigeria Police Bill to provide the Framework for the Nigeria Police Force.

Gagdi said the bill would ensure “cooperation and partnership between the police and host communities in maintaining peace and combating crimes”.

The lawmaker emphasised that the current Police Act was based on the same Act of 1943.

He said the Act was “flawed with deficiencies” and needed to be replaced with one that would reflect and address the current security challenges in the country and international best practices.

“The new Bill should address community policing, which should be legislated by this House; gender discrimination should also be addressed in the police force.

“The Bill deserves the attention of this House,” he said.

Also, Bamidele Salam (PDP, Osun) said rejuvenating the police force “starts from the recruitment process”.

He added: “Recruitment agencies that are of international standards and will focus on international best practices should be engaged.”

The Bill was referred to the House Committee on Police Affairs for further legislative action.

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