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Published On: Thu, May 22nd, 2014

Senate moves to outlaw chemical weapons production in Nigeria

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Nigerian-Senate-1By Ikechukwu Okaforadi

Senate has taken a step towards prohibiting any production of chemical weapons in Nigeria, as it yesterday passed for second reading, the Bill for an Act to outlaw the production of such weapons in the country.

If the Bill is passed for third reading, Nigeria would have ratified the Chemical Weapons Convention in Nigeria, which will among others, set up a National Authority would ensure the effective implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention in the country.

Leading debate on the Bill, the sponsor, who doubles as the Senate Leader, said that passage of the Bill has become necessary given the challenging security threats facing Nigeria.

Speaking further, Ndoma-Egba said “this Bill is premised on the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), an arms control treaty which outlaws the production, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons and their precursors”.

Nigeria, as a State, is signatory to the CWC treaty, which entered into force on April 29, 1997, and will join the 190 States who had given their consent to be bound by the CWC of 1997.

Senate President, David Mark, while speaking on the significance of the Bill, said it is a very important Bill, which will save Nigerians from a lot of dangers and crisis.

He described the Bill as timely, given the terrorism in the country at the moment.

Meanwhile, the Bill was referred to the Senate Committees on Science and Technology and Judiciary and Human Rights for further legislative works, and would be resubmitted in four weeks’ time.

In a related development, Senate also yesterday, confirm the Appointment of Salihu Yunusa Musa, as a commissioner in the Federal Character Commission, having been screened and cleared by the Senate Committee on Federal Character and Inter-Governmental Affairs.

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