Wednesday, 22 March 2023

Buhari rejects bill empowering NASS to summon president



The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, has stated the Senate will investigate the 19 Constitution Alteration Bills rejected by the 
President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.).
Lawan made this known during plenary on Tuesday.
 
The National Assembly had in January transmitted 35 Constitutional Alteration bills to the President for assent.
But Buhari had on Friday last week assented to 16 out of  the 35  bills.
 
Lawan noted that the most striking of the  16 bills that Buhari assented to was the Fifth Alteration Bill No 6,  which makes provisions for financial independence of state Houses of Assembly and the Judiciary.
The first of the 19 bills rejected by Buhari was the Fifth Alteration Bill No 24, which sought an Act to alter the Second Schedule to the 1999 Constitution to empower the National Assembly and state Houses of Assembly to summon the President and governors  to answer questions on issues on which the National and state Houses of Assembly have the Powers to make.
The rejected was Alteration Bill No. 7 which sought an Act to alter the provisions of the 1999 Constitution to compel obedience or compliance with legislative summons.
 
Also rejected was the Fifth Alteration Bill No 29 which sought for an Act to alter the provisions of the 1999 Constitution “to provide for a state of the nation and state-of-the-state address by the President and Governor.”
Also rejected was the Fifth Alteration Bill No 22, which sought an Act to alter the provisions of the 1999 Constitution “to Specify the period within which the President or the governor of state shall present the Appropriation Bill before the National Assembly or House of Assembly.”
Also rejected was bill No. 30, which sought an Act to alter the provisions of the 1999 Constitution  to Include former heads of the National Assembly in the Council of State.
Also rejected was Bill No. 14, which sought an Act to alter the 1999 Constitution to move Fingerprints, Identification and Criminal Records from the Exclusive Legislative List to the Concurrent Legislative List.
Lawan said, “We sent 35 Constitution Amendment bills. Sixteeen of them were approved while 19 of them were rejected. We will find out why those bills were rejected because we put a lot of resources into the process.
“We will continue to engage the executive and go through the bills and see if there are issues that we can deal with within the short period, we will continue to pursue them.
“But if the issues are cumbersome, we can leave it for the 10th Assembly.”
 

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