Senate to Consider 2014 Confab Reports in Constitution Review

  • Devolution of power, LG autonomy top agenda

The Senate yesterday said it will consider the recommendations of the 2014 Constitutional Conference in its constitution review process.

It constituted a 56-man Steering and Constitution Review Committee, headed by Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, last week.

Speaking at the inauguration of the committee, Omo-Agege said it will also consider the Governor Nasir el-Rufai-led committee on restructuring in carrying out the constitution review assignment.

He listed other areas to be reviewed in the constitution to include the alteration of the Sixth schedule to make provision for new items, the establishment of National and State Houses of Assembly, Pre-election Matters Tribunal, Governorship Pre-election Matters Tribunals and Presidential Pre-election Matters Tribunal, including time limit for the disposal of all pre-election matters before the conduct of the general elections.

“We will also consider the need for devolution of power, full Local Government fiscal autonomy, full autonomy of the judiciary in the area of administration of justice, youth inclusiveness in governance, gender parity or affirmative action,” he said.

The committee will also consider inputs from stakeholders and different interest groups across the country, he added.

He said the need for constitutional reforms has become necessary because of numerous challenges facing the country.

Omo-Agege said the committee would embark on far-reaching consultations with Nigerians across the six geo-political zones to aggregate their positions on current issues that require legislative action by way of constitutional reforms.

He urged all stakeholders to build consensus on constitutional issues that will impact the lives of the people of the country.

Senate President Ahmad Lawan urged the committee to ensure that inputs and outputs are not just exhaustive, but should also be wide ranging and effective.

“The continued success of our democracy is reasonably dependent on a well thought constitution. Though no constitution can be faultless, mostly because social dynamics are unpredictable, but a good review can increase its functionality, and then decrease social agitations.

“This will not only ensure national harmony, but also guarantee the greater peace and progress of our country.  As statesmen, we surely have another noble task in our hands,” he said.

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