A bill intended to phase out petrol-using cars was rejected by the senate last Wednesday.
The bill which was sponsored by Senator Ben Murray-Bruce of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), was aimed at mandating electric cars for use in the country by 2035.
Presenting the bill to his colleagues, Senator Ben Murray-Bruce who hails from Bayelsa State stated the implications of cars using petrol in regard to global warming and pollution. He said that, as a result of these, developed countries were already moving away from using petrol cars. Speaking further, Senator Bruce argued that electric cars had no negative effect on the ozone layer, and were economical and healthy.
>>> You can check details of the bill and Nigerian reactions to it here: How Nigerians react to Senator Been Bruce's electric car bill
The senate had finally withdrawn the controversial bill
Kicking against the bill, the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, was of the opinion that, being an oil producing nation, sale of electric cars should be frustrated in the country.
The bill generated debate in the hallowed chamber with several senators stating their reasons for being against the bill.
Ike Ekweremadu acknowledged Senator Bruce’s “uncommon common sense and brilliant ideas,” and went on to state that, in line with the ancillary to Section 41 of the 1999 Constitution, Nigerians have the freedom of movement. Hence, it is not possible to introduce a law that will limit their mode of movement to electric cars.
“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,”
Sen Ike Ekweremadu points out the impracticality of the bill
Debating on the bill, Senator Barau Jibrin (APC-Kano), said that, although electric cars were eco-friendly and good for the health, enforcing their use in the country was not feasible.
“We have to look at individual net-worth. Not all Nigerians can afford the vehicles at a given time."
The bill was ultimately withdrawn by Murray-Bruce.