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INTRIGUES STALL PASSAGE OF PRIVATE SECURITY BILL

By NBF NEWS
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The bill is sponsored by Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu.

Almost two years after the Senate referred a bill with a short title, 'The Private Detectives and Investigators Bill 2008,' to its Committee on National Intelligence and Security, little has been heard about it.

Our correspondent gathered in Abuja on Monday that the bill, which was read for the first time on April 24, 2008, may not see the light of day anytime soon.

This follows the confusion generated by the circulation of two identical bills seeking separate things.

It was gathered that while owners of existing private security firms would want the law to grant them greater autonomy to regulate themselves, the bill sponsored by Ekweremadu seeks the registration and regulation of their activities.

Ekwermadu's bill seeks to, among other things, inject private sector initiative into the detection and investigation of crime in Nigeria.

Although, the Senator Nuhu Aliyu-led Senate committee made an attempt to present a report on the bill, it was discovered that the proposed piece of legislation sponsored by Ekweremadu was not what the committee worked on.

This led to the Senate asking the committee to work on the Ekweremadu bill, which was originally referred to it.

Advancing reasons for sponsoring the bill, Ekeremadu had said, 'Private detectives and investigators offer services, including executive, corporate and celebrity protection, pre-employment verification and individual background profiles and checks.

'And apart from criminal investigation, private investigators also provide assistance in civil liability and personal injury matters, insurance claims and fraud, child custody and protection cases and premarital screening. Increasingly too, they are hired to investigate individuals to prove or disprove infidelity.'

The chairman of the Senate committee Senator Nuhu Aliyu, was not in his office when our correspondent visited on Monday and calls to his mobile phone did not go through.