A bill to watch, collate and regulate the corporate Social Responsibility(CSR), activities of organizations and corporations operating in Delta State has passed second reading on the ground of the State House of Assembly.
The bill entitled “Delta State Corporate Social Responsibility Monitoring Agency Bill”, was read for the second time at Wednesday’s plenary of the House with the lead sponsor, Hon (Chief) Ferguson Onwo representing Isoko South 2 Constituency leading debates on the merits of the bill.
Chief Onwo who is the Chairman, House Committee on Housing and ladies Affairs, said the advantages of the proposed law to the life of Delta State and its people were enormous because it would enhance the peace, development and good governance of the state.
The Lawmaker stated that the bill was seeking to determine an agency to be headed by a chairman, Director General and three other directors each representing each of the three senatorial districts of the state with the sole aim of ensuring standards within the CSR programmes of corporate bodies doing business within the state.
“The bill seeks to line up the workplace with the sole aim to collate, monitor and regulate the company social responsibility programmes of over three thousand, hundred and seventy corporate organizations in Delta State. The proposed law will make it compulsory for the companies to submit to the agency their CSR plan for the year on or before 31st March per annum “, Onwo stated.
Continuing Chief Onwo stressed “the advantages are enormous. it’ll bring standards to the Giving Back Mechanism amongst corporate organizations within the state as it would engender competition among the businesses. Data would be collected and published at the end of every year.
It’ll indeed fast track development in Delta State. I, therefore, enjoin all my colleagues to support the bill and ensure its passage with the speed of light”.
The Majority Leader of the House, Hon Tim Owhefere, Deputy legislator, Hon Oboro Preyor, Chief Whip, Hon Princess Pat Ajudua, Deputy Chief Whip, Hon Solomon Ighrakpata and Majority Whip, Hon Festus Okoh, who rose in support of the bill explained that it’ll bring sanity and generate resources for the people of Delta State.
The Lawmakers explained that because the government can’t handle the difficulty of development alone, enabling law was required to ensure that the companies doing business in Delta State live up to their corporate social responsibilities.
In their arguments also in favor of the speedy passage of the proposed law, Honorables Emeke Nwaobi, Rueben Izeze, Emomotimi Guwor, Erhriateke Ibori-Suonu, Austin Chikezie and Charles Emetulu, described the Bill as apt and commendable.
They said the difficulty of CSR between companies and their host communities has gone beyond the signing of Memorandum Of Understanding, MOU, explaining that the agency to be established by the proposed law will make sure that the companies conform with world best practices in their Corporate Social Responsibility Programmes.
The Speaker, Rt Hon Sheriff Oborevwori who presided over Wednesday’s plenary, referred the bill to joint committees on Trade and Investment and Special Bills.