A bill seeking to regulate international studies for the children of public officials and strengthen educational institutions in Nigeria has been rejected by members of the House of Representatives.
The members said the bill was an affront to their fundamental human rights.
But the bill sponsored by Hon. Serguis Ogun representing Esan North-East federal constituency of Edo was ultimately seeking to stop public officials from diverting public funds to their children’s education abroad.
Titled “A Bill for an Act to Regulate International Studies for Wards and Children of Nigerians Public Officers, So as to Strengthen Indigenous Institutions to Provide Efficient Educational Service for National Development”, it was roundly debated although it was eventually rejected when put to voice vote.
In his lead debate on the general principle of the bill, Ogun said the objectives of the bill included strengthening indigenous educational institutions to meet global standards; boosting the economy by reducing cash flight and foreign exchange; reducing brain drain and instituting good welfare conditions for indigenous academics, experts and professionals based abroad to come back home and develop their country with their skills and expertise; building a better society by developing formidable educational institutions and facilitating the realization of the fundamental objectives and policies of state enshrined in Chapter two of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (As Amended).
He said: “The bill does not prevent public officers or private citizens from sending their children/wards for studies abroad, it only seeks to ensure that a public officer who desires to send his/her child/ward abroad, does not divert public funds to so do. Thus, such a public servant must first show that he/she has the legitimate means to sponsor his/her child/ward on such foreign education trips.
“The bill will help in fostering the development of our educational institutions as it will instill accountability and seriousness into public servants at all levels who are saddled with the responsibility of implementing the policies and programmes of government.
“The bill when enacted will help to redirect the huge funds that fly out to other countries, into the relevant sectors of our economy. It will bring about better facilities in our national life.
Policy Implementation: This bill when passed into law will foster the fight against corruption which is one of the cardinal policies of this current administration.
“This bill when passed into law will engender the actualization of the provisions of the United Nations Convention against Corruption, to which Nigeria Read More
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