Prof Sagay says 1999 constitution should be dumped and replaced with 1963 constitution

The professor argues that the 1963 constitution provides for regionalism and federalism.

President Muhammadu Buhari meets members of advisory committee against corruption led by Prof. Itse Sagay   [Twitter/@BashirAhmaad]

The revered legal scholar says everything that is missing in the 1999 constitution and which is being clamoured for, is in the 1963 version.

“If we had that, with amendments here and there to make it accommodate states rather than regions which we used to have, I think all these agitations will die down and everybody will be happy,” Sagay tells ChannelsTV.

Sagay describes the 1999 constitution as a unitary constitution masquerading as a federal constitution.

“I only knew about Ibadan and Awolowo; the region controlled my life from A-Z and everything worked perfectly, beautifully, happily. That is what we are missing. We just have to go back to that, otherwise Nigeria will not enjoy stability,” he says.

“If we can have a process which will be towards having a new constitution, it will be better. Until we have it, we can manage with what the National Assembly is doing but certainly, it is far from satisfactory but may result in an improvement of what we have now.

“But what we really need is a clear departure from what we have. What we have now is a unitary constitution parading itself as a federal constitution," he adds.

Sagay also calls for the implementation of the APC restructuring report which is gathering dust somewhere in a government apartment.

The National Assembly is currently embarking on a nationwide public hearing project in a bid to further amend the 1999 constitution.

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