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Gender Bills: Reps Make U-turn, To Conduct New Voting



The House of Representatives has revoked its decision on three gender bills in the constitution amendment.

The U-turn is coming following the outcry the rejection of women-related bills generated.

The bills are; Citizenship: the bill seeking to amend section 26 of the 1999 constitution to provide for citizenship by registration for foreign spouses of Nigerian women.

Affirmative action: the bill proposes an amendment to section 223 of the constitution to provide 35% affirmative action to ensure women occupy at least 35% in political party administration.

Indigeneship: The bill seeks to amend the constitution to allow a woman to become an indigene of her husband’s state after at least five years of marriage.

The lower legislative chamber rescinded its decision on the bills after Hassan Fulata, chairman house committee on business and rules, moved a motion, The Cable reports.

“Honourable members recall that on the first of March we voted for constitution amendment on 68 bills,” Fulata said.

“However, three (gender) bills could not scale through because we could not obtain the two-thirds majority to pass the bills.

“Accordingly, in line with our extant rules, I move that we suspend our extant rules to rescind our decision in respect of these three bills and recommit to the committee of the whole for reconsideration.

Femi Gbajabiamila, the speaker of the house, said the bills will be reviewed in the next voting on the constitution amendment coming up in four weeks.