Posted by Johnbosco Agbakwuru | 22 June 2019 | 949 times
President Muhammadu Buhari has signed into law a bill titled: ‘Mutual Assistant in criminal matters Act, 2019’ to assist his administration’s war against corruption and criminality.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Ita Enang disclosed this, on Friday, while briefing State House Correspondents at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
This is as Senator Enang has said that bills that passed by the 8th National Assembly up to the time the members were in session would still be forwarded by the Clerk of the National Assembly for his assent.
The Presidential aide explained that the objective of Mutual Assistant in Criminal Matters law is to assist the government obtain from other countries, on reciprocal basis, mutual assistance in the prosecution of Criminal matters including the location and identification of suspects, witnesses and other materials for prosecution of criminal matters.
According to him, the law also assists in identification, tracing, freezing, restraining, recovery, forfeiture and confiscation of proceeds, property and other instrumentalities of crime.
Other aspects of the law are the interception of telecommunications, conversion of electronic surveillance and the restraint of dealings in property, or the freezing of assets, that may be recovered, forfeited or confiscated in respect of offences.
Enang said it also affected other assistance that is not contrary to the municipal law of the requesting State.
He said, “The Attorney -General of the Federation is designated as the Central Authority for making, receiving and transmitting requests for assistance to and from other countries as well as performing other functions reserved in the Act.
“Where the alleged offence is of a political character or an offence under military law or is not an offence under the laws of Nigeria, the provisions of this law shall not apply.” The law comes into effect from June 20, 2019.
On bills passed by the 8th Assembly, he said, “I want to say that Bills passed by the 8th Assembly up to the time it was still in session up to the June 6 will still be forwarded to be assented to by Mr. President as the clerk to the National Assembly transmits them.
“Only the bills which Mr. President withholds assents or bills which Mr. President considers that it is inappropriate to assent and takes a decision other than assent will not be communicated to the 9thAssembly because it is not that Assembly that passed it; 8th Assembly standing dissolved. “It could only be made available through other diplomatic channels but no more communication to the Assembly except those assented to.”
On the standoff in Edo and Bauchi Houses of Assembly, he said, “I do think that is a matter I can come into; it is domestic to those states.” (Vanguard)
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