The Speaker, House of Representatives, Mr Yakubu Dogara, says the National Assembly is ready to domesticate the Kampala Convention Treaty on Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
The Speaker gave the assurance while receiving a delegation from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Nigeria on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said that the Federal Government was working assiduously to ensure the speedy resettlement of refugees and IDPs, especially in the North-East.
Dogara informed the delegation that the Kampala Convention Treaty on IDPs would be domesticated as soon as the Executive arm of government transmitted it to the national assembly.
He acknowledged that the treaty was ratified by the Nigerian Government in 2012 and said that the Constitution did not give the legislature powers to initiate matters related to treaties.
According to him, the House is waiting for the executive arm to forward the treaty for domestication and once it is transmitted, it will be expeditiously passed.
“Constitutionally, the legislature does not enter into treaties, neither does it negotiate treaties.
“Treaties are supposed to be the exclusive preserves of the executive arm.
“But the Constitution equally gives us the power to domesticate them and that is where our own influence comes.
“I believe that as soon as this one is transmitted to the parliament, because of the importance of this instrument, we will domesticate it.
“For now, we are trying to get the executive to get it transmitted to the legislature.
“We have reached the Attorney-General of the Federation to get to the President on the need to transmit this document to the National Assembly.
“I am happy to report to you that from the preliminary discussions, the government holds no objection to this,’’ the speaker said.
He commended the ICRC for the humanitarian work in supporting the IDPs in the North-East.
Earlier, the Head of Mission of ICRC in Nigeria, Mr Eloi Fillion, expressed concern that Nigeria had yet to domesticate the Kampala Convention Treaty.
Fillion expressed readiness of the ICRC to provide technical support to enhance the lawmakers’ capacity to draft a Bill on the convention for onward domestication.
He commended the lower chamber for constituting a standing committee specifically dedicated to addressing the challenges of the IDPs and refugees.
He also presented the Speaker with a report of a study carried out in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe.
Fillion said that the report carried recommendations on steps to be taken for the implementation of the Kampala Convention in the North-East.
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