In Nigeria, senate says current constitution precludes new constitution

By Sunday Isuwa, Olawale Ayeni and Igho Oyoyo, 7 June
Flag of Nigeria (photo credit: David Peterson)
Flag of Nigeria (photo credit: David Peterson)
The Senate yesterday foreclosed the possibility of a brand new constitution in the ongoing constitution amendment exercise, saying such calls are illegal. There had been calls for a brand new constitution, with advocates of the new law insisting that it would create room for complete reform of the nation’s structure. [...] But the Senate yesterday ruled out the idea of a new constitution on the ground that that section 9 of the current constitution has already foreclosed a new constitution. Deputy president of the Senate, and chairman, Senate Committee on Constitution Review, Ovie Omo-Agege, stated this during the national public hearing on the review of the constitution at the International Conference Centre, Abuja. [...] “Specifically, section 9 of the constitution empowers the National Assembly to alter the provisions of the constitution and prescribes the manner in which it is to be done. Unfortunately, it does not make a similar provision to provide a mechanism for replacing or re-writing an entirely new constitution.” He pointed out that to embark on any process without altering section 9 of the 1999 constitution to provide the mode through which an entirely new constitution could be made would amount to gross violation of oath of allegiance to the constitution. “In other words, it will take a new Constitutional amendment to be able to give Nigerians a most desired new Constitution. It would be unconstitutional to do otherwise,” he added.
Read the full article here: Leadership Newspaper


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