Lawmakers Push For 6-Year Single Tenure, Rotational Power, Others


By Paul Effiong, Abuja

A group of 35 lawmakers in the House of Representatives have introduced Bills seeking to amend the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as Amended) in order to limit the period for individual to serve as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as well as the Governor of State from the current two terms of 4 years each, to a single 6-year tenure, rotational Presidency and Governorship among others.

Accordingly, the lawmakers in the bills are also pushing for all elections to be conducted in one day as well as conclusion of all pre election matters before election even as they advocate for the conclusion of all post election matters before swearing in.

In a Press conference held at the National Assembly yesterday, in Abuja, the Co sponsor of the Bills, Hon. Ikenga Ugochinyere along with representatives of other 35 lawmakers said the Bills, would address all the socio-economic and political challenges in Nigeria.

Among other demands, the proposed legislation is also seeking an amendment for rotation of Presidency across the six geopolitical zones in the country.

Lawmakers used the opportunity to lament against most lukewarm policies in the country even as they emphasized that Nigeria is among several countries in Africa which is being confronted by the threats of political instability and social conflicts leading to political actors in the country to canvass for the adoption of rotational and single tenure presidency as a potent political arrangement that can guarantee stability across various zones.

The group further called on Nigerians as well as other stakeholders to rise in support for their bill even as it emphasized that the country should emulate Mexico in it practices of presidential system of government informing that a single-term presidency of six years is currently being practice in that country.

Ugochinyere who spoke on behalf of the 35 Lawmakers is currently representing Ideato federal constituency in Imo State in the House of Representatives.

According to the lawmakers, the proposed Bills will equally address critical bills that call for restructuring of Nigeria’s governance and electoral systems stability.

They equally disclosed that the first of the bills have to do with constitutional alteration bill which is aimed at providing for the rotation of executive powers, Presidency, among all the six geopolitical zones for the purpose of ensuring equal representation across.

According to the group, the Bills when passed and ascented to will ensure equal representation, national stability, and inclusion of all regions in Nigeria.

“The bill will also help to reduce government spending and wastages on elections and achieve efficiency in governance since elected leaders will not be derailed or distracted by reelection agendas”.

Ephasizing the need for support, the lawmakers maintained that another important aspect of the bill is to ensure that the Constitution recognizes the division of Nigeria into six geopolitical zones, and for the position of the Presidency, the rotation of power between the North and the South which are clearly done amongst the six-geopolitical zones for the purpose of ensuring that no zone is left out in six successions.

On issue of electoral Act amendment, the 35 lawmakers explained that the bill will also ensure that all elevant sections of the Electoral Act is fine tuned to ensure that all elections (presidential, governorship, National Assembly, state houses of Assembly, and local governments) are held on the same day.

They also described elections as the only democratic means of bringing back sanity in Nigeria’s polity even as they expressed hope that the bills will address election violence, and corruption in Nigeria electoral processes.

The proposed bills will enforce electronic transmission of results and accreditation of voters, outlawing the use of manual means completely from Nigeria.

The Bills according to the 35- lawmakers has passed through the first reading at the 10th House of Representatives even as they emphasized commitment and readiness to ensuring that reforms made achieve Nigerian collective desires.

Meanwhile lawmakers in the group are also calling on stakeholders, advocacy groups, and the general public to partner with them by lending their voices to ensure that the bills do not only become laws but are implemented effectively to achieve its expected objectives on Nigeria’s governance restructuring.


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