The Senate

Know Your Parliament
The Senate

 

One of the two chambers of the Nigeria’s National Assembly that make up the Bicameral Legislature is the Senate.  It is popularly known as the Red Chamber in Nigeria.  The Senate is made up of 109 duly elected Distinguished Senators representing Nigeria’s 109 Senatorial Districts.

 

The formation of the Chamber is based on three Senatorial Districts per State and one for the Federal Capital Territory.  It is presided over by the President of the Senate and assisted by the Deputy President of the Senate. They are also assisted by eight Principal Officers and several Committee Chairmen and Vice Chairmen.

 

The eight Principal Officers include Majority Leader, Deputy Majority Leader, Minority Leader, Deputy Minority Leader, Chief Whip, Deputy Chief Whip, Minority Whip and Deputy Minority Whip.

 

As the highest lawmaking institution in the country, the Red Chamber is constitutionally vested with the power of making laws for the peace, order and good governance of the Federation.  Similarly, it is empowered to represent the interest, yearnings, aspirations and wellbeing of the citizenry.  Also, the apex Parliament is saddled with the power of scrutinizing public institutions and officials to ensure probity and accountability in governance.

 

Similarly, the Upper Legislative house also intervenes in matters of urgent National interest like insecurity, epidemic, drought, poverty, illiteracy, flood and other national issues.  It can also intervene in resolving disputes between the government and labour unions with a view to usher in industrial harmony and stabilize the nation’s polity.

 

The Red Chamber equally has a unique function of impeachment of the President, Vice President, Federal Judges and other high officials of the Executives; including the Federal Auditor General, Members of the Independent National Electoral Commission and Federal Inland Revenue Commission.

 

The Senate confirms the President’s Nominations of Senior Diplomats, Members of the Federal Cabinet, Federal Judicial Appointments, Members of the Nation’s Electoral Commission and so on.

 

In discharging its Constitutional mandate, Section 62 (1) of the Constitution of the Federal republic of Nigeria (1999) empowers the Senate and the House of Representatives to appoint Committees of special and general purpose as may be considered expedient.  Accordingly, members of the Senate are distributed into various Committees for the smooth discharge of their legislative duties. The Chamber has been in the vanguard of promoting Nigeria’s democratic ideals, peace, unity and development.


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