BEVERLY HILLS, July 26, (THEWILL) – In an ongoing move to amend 33 major items in the 1999 Constitution, the Nigerian Senate on Wednesday Voted to reject a proposal for the devolution of more powers to the states.
Using electronic voting, 48 of 96 Senators present voted against the proposal, which was on Tuesday challenged by Senator Adamu Aliero, on the basis that it should not go without a review of the revenue sharing formula to give more money to states.
The lawmakers turned down the
the move to alter the Second Schedule, Parts I and II of the Constitution to move certain items to the Concurrent Legislative List to give more legislative powers to states.
The proposed amendment was to also delineate the extent to which the federal legislature and state assemblies can legislate on the items that have been moved to the Concurrent Legislative List.
The upper legislative chamber also voted to abrogate State-Local Government joint accounts, and guarantee existence of democratically-constituted Local Government Areas, LGAs.
The Senate, which voted to expand the Council of States to include former Presidents of the Senate and Speakers of the House of Representatives.
The chamber voted to ensure that ministerial nominees alongside their portfolios are sent within 30 days of inauguration of the president and of governors for states. Members resolved that the FCT Minister should be appointed from one of the six area councils that make up the nation’s capital.
The Senate also empowered the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to deregister political parties over failure to secure an elective seat. This was as the functions of the state independent electoral commission were transferred to INEC.
It also voted to alter the Constitution to provide for 35 percent affirmative action for women in federal and state cabinets. At the end of voting, the 35 per cent and 20 per cent affirmative action at both federal level and state level respectively were rejected by the lawmakers.