Constitution Review National Assembly votes on 32 bills

Voting on the bills is expected to take the parliament over two days, with a two third majority required to pass a bill.

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Nigerian Senate play

Nigerian Senate

(Pulse)
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The two chambers of the National Assembly will commence steps to alter the 1999 constitution today, July 26, 2017, as they vote on 32 separate bills grouped in separate themes.

Voting on the bills is expected to take the parliament over two days, with a two-third majority required to pass a bill.

For a bill to pass in the Senate, 73 votes would be required, while 240 votes will be required to pass one in the House of Representatives. The bills have been harmonised between the two chambers so that they all appear in both houses.

If the passed bills are approved by State Houses of Assembly, they will then be passed on to the president to approve.

Ironically, one of the bills "seeks to alter sections 58, 59 and 100 to resolve the impasse where the President or Governor neglects to signify his/her assent to a bill from the National Assembly or withhold such assent."

10 Times the National Assembly failed Nigerians in 2016 play Senate President, Bukola Saraki (left) and Speaker, House of Reps. Yakubu Dogara (right) (Daily Trust)

 

Another bill seeks to alter the Sections 65, 106, 131, 177 of the Constitution to reduce the age qualification for the offices of the President and Governor and membership of the Senate, House of Representatives, and the State Houses of Assembly.

Some of the others include: strengthening local government administration, an obligation of the President to attend a joint meeting of the National Assembly once a year to deliver a state of the nation address, provision of options for the electorate by allowing for independent candidacy in all elections, deletion of the National Youth Service Corps Decree from the Constitution so that it can be subject to the regular process of amendment.

Hours before the process started, Senate President, Bukola Saraki announced, on his Twitter handle (@bukolasaraki), that the constitution review "will reshape and redefine Nigeria."

 

Replying to a question about the process, he also said, "Senators are expected to vote along the lines of what their constituents want. They are aware the voting pattern will be up public review"

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