CONSTITUTION: Why Immunity Clause has to Remain -Reps

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The House of Representatives has foreclosed thoughts of the immunity clause for governors being removed in the ongoing efforts to review the Nigerian Constitution.

Deputy Speaker of the House and Chairman, Constitutional Review Committee, Mr. Yussuf Lasun made the legislature’s intent known at the weekend, while speaking to journalists on the activities of the Constitutional Review Committee in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.

Many Nigerians have over the years clamoured for the removal of immunity clause which protects certain class of leaders from prosecution. It is at present enjoyed by the president, vice president, governors and their deputies.

A number of analysts had envisaged that the National Assembly in its ongoing process of reviewing the nation’s constitution, would consider removing the immunity clause, especially for governors, which many have argued creates executive rascality.

Lasun however noted, that if the clause is removed, it would create room for litigation against the individuals and this, he said, would unpleasantly affect the performance of those enjoying it at the moment.

He added that any offence an official enjoying the privilege commits can be initiated against him at the expiration of his tenure.

He said the areas the lawmakers are trying to correct are separating the office of the attorney-general from that of the minister of justice, to make the office of the Accountant General of the Federation a front-line charge in order to make the office more efficient and the issue of financial autonomy for the local government system.

He further said that the lawmakers would also look at ways of dealing with an electoral situation where a candidate in an election dies before the electoral process is concluded, citing the case in Kogi State governorship election where the leading candidate, Prince Abubakar Audu, died before the election results were announced as an example.

Lasun assured that the review committee will also delete ‘force’ from the name of the Nigeria Police.


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