As the clamour for Diaspora voting intensifies, Hon. Tolulope Akande-Shadipe, Chairperson, House of Representatives Committee on Diaspora Affairs has assured Nigerians living abroad that the committee is working on it .
Akande-Shadipe who led her committee on oversight function to Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman/CEO Nigerians in the Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) in Abuja on Friday, said the House is strategizing on strengthening existing laws through legislative reforms to guarantee voting rights for Nigerians in the Diaspora during general elect itions in the country.
The Chairperson explained that the Diaspora voting bill is a sensitive matter which requires a constitutional amendment whose passage should not be rushed.
The lawmaker said that the nation as a whole should respect the impact and huge contributions the Diasporans are making to the country national development, hence the need for them to participate in the homeland electoral process.
While commending the Abike Dabiri-Erewa led NIDCOM for its dynamism despite the challenges the Commission is facing, she assured that the priority of the committee was to assist NIDCOM to achieve its mandate.
Receiving the committee members in her office, the NIDCOM boss, Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa thanked them for coming and solicited for their support in helping the Commission to grow.
She listed other future plans of the Commission which include making the Commission a revenue generating agency, finalise a diaspora policy for the nation and cultural exchange programmes for Nigeria children abroad.
The NIDCOM boss however said that due to Covid-19 global pandemic lockdown, remittances to Nigeria from the Diaspora will be greatly affected as global economy has nosedived.
She added that the pandemic has affected the annual Diaspora Day slated for July 25 which will still hold through a virtual device where all the stakeholders would hook on.
Dabiri-Erewa appealed to the Committee to help it grow through legislative interventions and enhanced budget to be able to fulfill its mandate and set out objectives.
Friday meeting is the first oversight function carried out by the Committee since inception of the Commission due to its lack of office accommodation.