By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Information, National Orientation Ethics and Value Honourable Segun Odebunmi on Saturday said Federal Government and the Minister of Information are not behind the bill for the amendment Nigeria Press Council Bill sponsored by him
Speaking while featuring on FRESH FM 109.5 Ibadan live interview programme, “South West political circuit”, the lawmaker representing Ogo Oluwa/Surulere Federal Constituency in Oyo state, declared that the insinuation that the bill was sponsored by Federal Government through Minister of Information and , Culture Alhaji Lai Mohammed was not true.
The lawmaker insisted that “the proposed amendment is for public good and was solely his idea” based on the fact that the only way to remove the bottleneck on the effectiveness of the bill was to sponsor an amendment on the existing bill.
” The bill was not sponsored by Federal Government, even the Minister of Information was only aware few days to presentation and he did not have any input on the bill, it is my idea because I feel we should not wait for supreme court judgement to do what is right by amending the existing controversial law”, he said
According to him, ” a bill for an act to amend the Nigerian Press Council Act. Cap N128, Laws of the Federation Of Nigeria 1992 is to remove the bottlenecks affecting its performance and make the Council in tune with the Current realities in Regulating Press”
He pointed out that he was only influenced by his passion to ensure effectiveness of the regulating agencies and not to gag the media as being poorly muscled by some sectors of the public, adding,” most of the people commenting on the bill have no knowledge of it.”
Honourable Odebunmi stated that stakeholders in the media industry are involved and their contributions to the bill would determine the extent of the amendment and whether it would be passed or not, adding that. for now it has been put on hold pending the ratification and submission by the stakeholders in the media industry,
The lawmaker noted that the Act in its current state “is a disservice to media depth of the country hence the need for the amendment.”
Commenting on his achievements, Honourable Odebunmi stressed that despite the laudable projects he initiated and brought to his constituency, he is poised to do more for his people in ensuring that they enjoy dividends of democracy.
On the ongoing Ogbomoso Oyo road, Honourable Odebunmi said the road will be completed soon, saying, ” as I speak, entrance into Ogbomoso is hard now because of the ongoing reconstruction, most of the township road are in bad shape and just because of the ongoing projects , I have seek for an audience with FERMA Chairman to strong case for the road and the state government must also take a complementary action to achieve a faster result.