Senator Dino Melaye says he has filed legal action against the House of Representatives and its speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, on the Control of Infectious Diseases Bill.
The former Kogi legislator made the court documents public on Monday on social media. He said he filed the case at the Federal High Court in Abuja.
The bill which has 82 sections and initiated by Mr Gbajabiamila scaled second reading on April 28 before it was stood down.
It seeks to repeal the Quarantine Act and strengthen the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and make it more proactive and “not just reactive and function when there is an outbreak.”
The bill also seeks to empower the president, the minister of health as well as the director-general of NCDC, and the institutions they head, to make regulations on quarantining, vaccination and prevention of infectious diseases in Nigeria.
Just as possession of the yellow fever card is mandatory to move from one country to another, the bill seeks to make similar provisions for international travellers leaving or arriving in Nigeria.
By this, travellers are expected to “have undergone vaccination or other prophylaxis against all or any of the diseases as may be prescribed.”
This means they are to produce valid international certificates of vaccination or other prophylaxis to authorities before travelling.
Among others, sections 55 and 56 of the bill say the NCDC DG and the police may at “any time without warrant” enter, inspect and search any premises or conveyance where a suspected outbreak has taken place.
Gbajabiamila, while presenting the bill, said the Quarantine Act provides a penalty of N500 for defaulters, but the new bill proposes a penalty of between N200,000 and N5 million as well as jail terms.