Senate President, Bukola Saraki, said on Tuesday that full adherence to the principle of Separation of powers was crucial to the survival of democracy, good governance and enhanced national security.
A statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Sani Onogu, said the Senate president made this call in his address to Course 26 Participants of the National Defence College (NDC) in Abuja.
He said a situation where people frown at actions of the legislature taken during plenary negates the principle of separation of powers and rule of law.
He noted that each arm of government is intended and designed to be free of coercive influence from another.
“But, regrettably, that is not always the case, in practice, in the Nigerian experiment.
“Section 60 of the 1999 Constitution provides that: ‘Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, the Senate and the House of Representatives shall have the power to regulate its own procedure, including the procedure for summoning and recess of the House.
“We, in the legislature, as representatives of the people, strive to carry out our oversight functions in line with the doctrine of separation of powers – because it is our duty as stipulated by the Constitution.
“We also do so to guard against Lockean ‘human frailty’ – by which I mean the tendency towards abuse of power, where such power is absolute. To one’s chagrin, however, our actions are often misconstrued, because few understand that the legislative arm of government is not a rubber-stamp, driven from pillar to post by the whims and caprices of another organ of government.
“Let all listening to me today note the unassailable position, which is this: the Executive, the Judiciary and the Legislature are co-equals; none is subordinate to the other. Indeed, as former Senate President, Ken Nnamani, once opined, ‘the Legislature and the Executive are co-managers of the economy,” Saraki stated.