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Reps to reintroduce diaspora voting bill

The House of Representatives Committee on Diaspora has promised to reintroduce the Diaspora Voting Bill, to to allow Nigerians living in abroad to exercise their franchise.

Chairman of the committee, Tolulope Shadipe, said this when the Chairman and the Chief Executive Officer, of Nigerians in the Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, appeared before the committee on Thursday in Abuja.

Daily Nigerian reported that, Dabiri-Erewa was at the National Assembly to defend the commission’s proposed 2023 budget and 2022 budget performance.

Shadipe promised that the committee would reintroduce the diaspora voting bill which was earlier rejected at the constitution amendment exercise in March 2022.

Mrs Shadipe said the bill for the diaspora voting would pass this time because that was the direction the world is going and Nigeria must not be left behind.

“We will be back with the bill, they are Nigerians and they have the right to vote in Nigerian elections.

“The modalities and the issues raised the last time will be resolved and we will come back to it,” she said.

She said the committee was also looking at the issue of people of Nigerian descent who were currently not Nigerians but wanted to return home after the DNA tests proved that they had ties to Nigeria.

Mrs Dabiri-Erewa, speaking about the recent trend of Nigerians fleeing the country, seeking greener pastures abroad, urged Nigerians to stop migrating to other countries if they did not have jobs there.

According to her, 80 per cent of prisoners in Dubai are Nigerians who went there without jobs and got into trouble.

She therefore, called for a stronger multi-sector collaboration to stop the trend.

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