Immediate past Senate President, David Mark, has finally spoken on the floor of the 8th National Assembly.
Mark, who had not said a word on the floor of the Red Chambers since its inauguration on June 9, 2015, broke his two years and four months silence on Wednesday when he stood to read an abridged version of a bill he was sponsoring.
The “Bill for an Act to Establish the Federal University of Health Science, Utukpo and other related matters connected thereto, 2017”, was read for the second time during Wednesday’s plenary.
Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided, disallowed debate on the bill in respect.
Leader of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, urged his colleagues not to debate the bill because of the status of the sponsor.
He said: “This bill reminds me of my days in the opposition. Elsewhere in the world, this bill will not be debated because of the sponsor. For someone who served as the Senate President for eight years is not ordinary. We need to appreciate that fact.
“In the 2018 appropriation year, the Senate should make provision for this institution to take off and provide services to the entire people of Nigeria. This will not only benefit the people of Benue South, but Nigerians.”
Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, who presided, noted: “This bill has enjoyed sufficient support. We must appreciate the sponsor for this opportunity. This bill seeks to create a special university that will cater for the wellbeing of Nigerians. I can see lawmakers who left the chamber, but had to return because of the importance of this bill.”
When he put it to a voice vote that the bill be read for the second time, it got a resounding ‘yes’. No lawmaker voted against it. The bill has been referred to the Senate committee on Tertiary Education.