National Security Trust Fund Bill, yesterday, passed second reading at the House of Representatives.
The bill seeks to basically provide security agencies with military and security hardware, infrastructure and technologies to aid in ensuring national security.
Sponsor of the bill, Rimamnde Shawulu (PDP Taraba) at plenary, said the bill, if successfully passed into law, would settle the issue of budget constraints and poor renumeration of security personnel, inadequate equipment, poor state of available equipment, low level of training, limited manpower and poor maintenance culture.
He said: “Budgetary constraint and the changing nature of security threats have made several nations in the world to go outside the annual budget cycle to fund the military and security agencies.”
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According to him, the fund, when set up, will bring out a “centralised planning for proper coordination of resources and manpower, a predictable income base which will facilitate private investment in defence and security industry as it will ensure long term loans/facilities for potential investors and increase Public-Private Partnership.”
The bill was supported by majority of members, including Nnena Elendu-Ukeje, Chairperson, House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
It was eventually committed to the House committees on Army, Defence and National Security and Intelligence for further legislative input after Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, called for a voice vote.