<p>In keeping its promise and maintaining an astute resolve to give Nigerians a true people-oriented Constitution, the House of Representatives resumed plenary on Tuesday 14, October to receive the report of the Conference Committee on the alteration and further review of the 1999 Constitution. Before laying the report before the House, the Chairman of the Committee, Deputy Speaker Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, gave an insight into some of the highpoints of the report. He disclosed that the Conference Committee was made up of 18 legislators - 9 Senators and 9 Reps. </p>

<p>The Speaker, Rt. Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, commended the Committee for ensuring diligent and timely submission of the report. He said giving Nigerians a new constitution would be the landmark of the legacy of the current Assembly and urged members to dedicate their time and resources to ensure that core issues that positively affect the people of Nigeria are strongly captured. This, he said, would be possible through lobbying and persuading members of the State Legislatures to vote in line with the true conscience of Nigerians. The Speaker further called on the Reps to be available on Wednesday, 15th October for voting on the decisions of the Conference Committee. </p>
Also, during Tuesday’s plenary a motion which sought for rescission of the decision taken in the Committee of the whole to retain Clause 29(1) (b) in the proposed amendment to section 29 (1)  of the principal Act of Electoral Act, 2010 suffered defeat via voice vote. Sooner than the mover of the motion, Hon. Leo Ogor, proceeded with his motion on the matter, the Minority Leader of the House, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila’s attempted effort to stop him by way of a Point of Order failed as the Speaker repeatedly and dramatically ruled him out of Order. This made the motion interesting as the mood of the House was tilted along party lines. But when the question was put on the matter, the minority won via voice vote, while the majority was left murmuring that the presiding officer should have alerted their consciousness to the vote by putting the question twice before ruling on the matter.</p>
The section in question is said to be in conflict with sections 217 (1) and 218 (1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It affects the functions of the Armed Forces to suppress insurrection and acting in aid of civil authorities to restore order when called upon to do so by the President, but subject to such conditions as may be prescribed by an Act of the National Assembly. Hon. Leo Orgor canvassed that Clause 29(1) of the proposed amendment, is inconsistent with the provisions of the above cited sections of the Constitution, hence should be deleted.</p>

  • 2014-10-25 12:02:49