How Nigeria Senate Voted To Amend the 1999 Constitution

How Nigeria Senate Voted To Amend the 1999 Constitution

The Nigeria Senate Wednesday, voted on 33 Alteration Bills as part of the very decisive review process on the 1999 Constitution.

It was also turning point for Nigeria’s legislative history as it was the first time any of the two legislative houses voted on bills using the electronic voting process.

Next Edition monitored 97 senators were in attendance as the voting process went on for over four hours, but when voting began, 95 senators were present in the chamber.

Key amongst the bills voted where the bills to delete the Land Use Decree and the NYSC Decree from the constitution to enable easy amendment. The senators also voted on the Bill for 35 Percent affirmative action for women as ministers and the popular “Not Too Young To Run Bill which reduces age limits for elective positions.

Also voted on where Bills to allow local governments have their own special accounts, restrict tenures of state governors and the president to a single term of 6 years as well as granting INEC the power to deregister political parties who fail to win at least one elective seat in an election.

 Read also: Strike: FG, ASUU to resume negotiation within a week

 

How members voted

Bill
Yes
No
Abstain
Council of State (1)
95 (95 senators were present as at the time voting commenced)
Nil
Nil
Authorization of  expenditure (2)
93
1
1
Devolution of power (3)
90
5
Nil
Financial autonomy of state legislature (4)
90
5
Nil
Local Government special accounts (5)
84
8
1
Democratic existence funding & tenure for local Government councils (6)
88
7
1
State creation and boundary adjustment (7)
47
48
Nil
Power to deregister parties who fail to win an elective seat (8)
90
Nil
Nil
Presidential Assent (9)
95
1
Nil
Ministerial nominees submission time frame (11a)
75
19
Nil
Submission of ministerial nominees with their portfolios (11b)
78
16
1
35% affirmative action for women as ministers (11c)
49
43
2
Submission of commissioners nominees with their portfolios (11d)
84
7
Nil
Submission of names of commissioners offices attached with their portfolio (11e)
87
8
Nil
Appointment of minister from the FCT (12)
77
12
3
Affirmative action for women as states commissioners (11f)
61
35
Nil
Change of names of some LG councils in Oyo, Ogun, Rivers, Plateau and Ebonyi States (13)
84
2
2
Independent Candidacy (14)
82
5
3
Change of name for the Nigeria Police Force to Nigerian Police (15)
87
2
1
Restriction of tenures for the President and State Governors to just one term (16)
88
Nil
Nil
Separation of office of the Accountant General (17)
89
Nil
Nil
Inclusion of the Auditor General in the first line chat of consolidated revenue (18)
95
Nil
Nil
Separation of office of the Attorney General from the Minister of Justice (19)
95
1
1
Submissions from the judiciary (20)
95
2
1
Determination of pre-election matters (21)
97
Nil
Nil
Consequential Amendment on Civil Defense (22)
97
Nil
Nil
Citizenship and Indigenship (23)
49
46
Nil
Procedure for overriding presidential Veto in Constitutional Alteration (24)
87
4
Nil
Removal of law making power from executive arm (25)
89
3
Nil
Investment and Securities Tribunal (26)
76
14
5
Reduction of Age for Election
(Not Too Young To Run) (27)
86
10
1
Expenditure Time Frame for Appropriation Bill passage (28)
94
Nil
Nil
Deletion of NYSC decree (29)
88
3
Nil
Deletion of public complaint act (30)
90
1
2
Deletion of Land Use Act (31)
46
44
Nil
Deletion of State INEC (32)
73
19
2
Deletion of National Security Agencies (33)
92
2
0

 

It is expected that these bills which have passed through the voting process in the Senate will be pushed through to the state houses of assembly. However, this is still dependent on what happens in the House of Representatives as regards their passage.

All alterations approved by the National Assembly will be passed through to the President for assent and this can only happen if they are approved by all the state houses of assembly in the Federation.

It is very important to note that amongst the bills passed by the Senate and in need of a presidential assent is the bill to remove the president from giving approval to amendments to the constitution in future.

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