The amendments made by the National Assembly on 8th May were approved by the Parliamentary Legal Committee on Wednesday 9th May. They were then formally adopted by the National Assembly at Thursday’s House sitting and the Bill was given its Third Reading [a mere formality – the Bill is not read out in its entirety, there is just a vote to finally approve the Bill before it goes to the Senate].
The amendments made by the National Assembly have transformed and greatly enlarged the Bill. It now contains 37 clauses as compared to the mere 6 of the original Bill gazetted in September last year [link]. The amendments have been incorporated into a consolidated version of the Bill [link] which will make the Bill as it stands now easier for Senators to read.
If amendments are made in the Senate they will have to go through the Parliamentary Legal Committee – it will probably be on standby and this can be done quickly. But, the Bill will then have to go back to the National Assembly and the amendments either accepted or rejected. If accepted the Bill as amended goes to the President for signature and is then gazetted as an Act.
If the National Assembly rejects or alters a Senate amendment, the Senate has to meet and either withdraw that amendment or agree to the alteration. [They have ninety days to agree or withdraw and it they have not withdrawn or agreed to alteration by then, the National Assembly can pass a resolution to send it to the President for signature with National Assembly amendments and any Senate amendments National Assembly has agreed to.]