The Bayelsa House of Assembly on Wednesday passed the Education Safety Corps Bill, 2017 to enhance security and prevent crimes in public primary and secondary schools in the state.
Sponsored by the Majority Leader of the Assembly, Mr Peter Akpe (PDP-Sagbama 1), the bill is for the establishment of Education Safety Corps, to ensure protection of equipment, security of pupils and guard against cultism, kidnapping or other such crimes.
The lawmakers, after extensive debate, unanimously passed the bill after it was read for the third time.
The Speaker, Mr Konbowei Benson, who presided over the session, said the bill was timely because of the resurgence of cultism among students.
Following its passage, the bill was sent to the governor for his assent.
According to the bill, the Corps will be headed by a retired senior security officer, who will serve as its State Commandant.
The members, who must be between the ages of 18 and 45, are expected to respond and alert police on crimes, arrest of suspects, and also maintain peace during sports and major events or other allied functions.
The body would also have Local Government sector coordinators who would work with the police and other security agencies.
In another development, the member representing Kolokuma/Opokuma Constituency 2, Mr Ebiye Tarabina, has defected from APGA to the ruling PDP, citing internal crisis within his party as reason for his defection.
The letter of notice was read on the floor of the Assembly during plenary and Tarabina was received by 21 PDP members of the 24-member State Assembly.