Well, it's evident that Ben Bruce is standing all alone on this bill.
The Senate had a plenary session on Wednesday, and there, rejected the electric car bill asking that petrol vehicles be phased out by 2035, to introduce electric cars into the country.
The Senate rejected the electric car bill asking that petrol vehicles be phased out by 2035
The lawmakers pointed out that demanding that Nigerians should stop using petrol vehicles is impracticable.
Since the bill was rejected, Senator Ben Bruce, who was the sponsor of the bill withdrew it.
And there, a Point of Order was raised by him. He said the future generation will sure stand with him on the need to embrace electric cars. He added that petrol-powered vehicles will phase out in no distant time. He said its better Nigeria embrace the change for its own good.
See his statement below.
I can never quarrel with my leaders and friends but I want them to close their eyes and know they are in the 21st century.
I own an electric car that I have been using for the past five years. It is cheaper to maintain and durable. So, the fears put forward by my colleagues are highly debatable.
I will withdraw the bill but I want my colleagues to know they do not belong in the 21st century,
When Ben Bruce was presenting the bill to the house, he stated the benefits of using an electric car. Among which is reducing air pollution and complying with clean energy policy.
Since the bill was rejected, Senator Ben Bruce, who was the sponsor of the bill withdrew it
Responding to the bill, the Deputy Speaker, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, commended Ben Bruce on the bill. However, he said that passing a bill that'll mandate Nigerians to switch from petrol vehicles to electric cars isn't necessary. Going forward, he said people were formerly using animals as the only means of transportation until technological advancement introduced the use of bicycles, motorcycles, and cars. He said the 1999 Nigerian Constitution which provided for the free movement of people is enough.
Here's the Deputy Speaker's contribution.
I congratulate Ben Murray Bruce for his uncommon common sense and brilliant ideas in the lead debate but what is not common is the need to introduce a law to mandate the use of electric cars.
If we go down in history donkeys were used as means of transportation and there is no law that caused people to begin to use cars.
This is ancillary to section 41 of the 1999 Constitution, which requires freedom of movement. So, he should consider taking back the bill.
Besides, in economic sense, we are an oil producing country. So, we should do everything possible to frustrate the sale of electric cars in Nigeria to enable us to sell our oil.
Another speaker, Senator Barau Jibrin, representing a senatorial zone in Kano state was of the view that electric cars are friendlier to the people's health and environment but mandating it isn't feasible.
Here's his own view.
We have to look at individual net worth. Not all Nigerians can afford the vehicles at a given time.
We all know the importance of vehicles in our daily activities. So, banning use of fuel cars will cause hardship, particularly for those who may not be able to acquire electric cars.
The Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, asked the house members to move on to other items on the Order Paper for the day, as Ben Bruce has withdrawn the bill.
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