Members of the Senate and House of Representatives will, for now, hold plenary sessions on Tuesdays only.
This announcement was made by the Clerk to the National Assembly, Sani Omolori. The message was conveyed in a circular dated May 1.
In the letter, the Clerk also issued guidelines for partial and gradual resumption of selected staff on essential legislative duties. This, he said, is in furtherance of the federal government’s decision to ease the lockdown from May 4,2020.
Clerks to the two chambers and secretaries of the directorates are to come to work on all office days commencing from Monday, the letter read.
“Since the chambers will sit on Tuesdays only, all essential staff of the two chambers already identified and cleared, shall come to work on Mondays and Tuesdays only.
“All National Assembly Directors and Committee Clerks are to come to work on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays only. All Legislative Aides shall continue to work from home.”
It further says all banks, restaurants and other business outfits within the National Assembly complex shall remain closed. And for the duration of this period, only the main gate shall be operational for staff. However, the presidential gate shall be available for legislators on Tuesdays.
The working hours throughout this period shall be from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Mr Omolori also directed the Secretary of Health Services and Secretary of Procurement, Estate and Works to provide hand sanitisers and all necessary protective gears at all strategic points.
“For the purpose of clearing and facilitating these measures and guidelines, a three-man committee comprising the Secretary, Human Resources and Staff Development, Director, Public Affairs and, Sergeant-At-Arms is hereby constituted.
“Clerks and Secretaries to Directorates will continue to identify (on need basis), staff required for specific assignments from time to time and forward the list to the Committee.”
ln the meantime, all staff on duty should observe social distancing and other NCDC directives in addition to remaining in their offices while maximising the use of intercom, telephone and ICT platforms for communication, he said.
Also, all legislators and staff are requested to maintain personal hygiene and to report suspicious cases or symptoms of COVID-19 to the NCDC on 0800 970 000-10
The helpline for emergency contacts on 0805 558 8663 already established by the Secretary, Health Services Directorate National Assembly remains operational.
Prior to the memo, the Senate spokesperson, Ajibola Basiru, announced the Senate’s resumption on his official Twitter handle.
The lawmakers resumed plenary for a brief period on Tuesday during which they approved President Muhammadu Buhari’s N850 billion request.
While the Senate adjourned indefinitely, the House of Representatives suspended plenary till next Tuesday.