• Saturday, May 18, 2024
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Constitution review: Nigerians reject state police


 The House of Representatives ad hoc Committee on the Review of 1999 Constitution said majority of Nigerians voted against state police but endorsed independent candidacy in the country’s electoral system.

This is contained in the collated results of the Peoples’ Public Session presented to Nigerians in Abuja on Thursday.

It stated that 307 federal constituencies voted against state police, while 53 were in support.

The report stated that 292 supported independent candidacy, 66 were against it while two were undecided.

According to the report, 254 constituencies voted for the creation of more states while 105 voted against it.

They were, however, not in agreement on the particular number as different constituencies had proposed different number of states.

Other contentious issues contained in the report is the abolition of the state independent electoral commissions which 261 constituencies voted for, while 95 voted against it.

On immunity for the president, his vice and state governors and their deputies, 225 voted for the amendment of Section 308 for immunity to cover only civil proceedings while they are in office.

Single tenure proposal for the office of the president and governors in the constitutional review was rejected with 245 constituencies voting against, while 110 voted in support.

On Nigerians Diaspora to vote during general elections, 311 constituencies voted against the proposal as only 46 voted for it.

The committee said that other contentious issues not covered by these report would be looked into as the amendment progresses.

Meanwhile, Aminu Tambuwal, speaker, House of Representatives, has given the assurance that the views of all Nigerians will be respected in the ongoing constitution review.

Tambuwal gave the assurance at the public presentation of the collated results of the Peoples’ Public Session on the review of the 1999 constitution in Abuja on Thursday.

“To all Nigerians, let me seize this opportunity to assure, on behalf of the House of Representatives, that all views and opinions offered at these public sessions will be considered”, he said.

According to him, those forwarded through written memoranda, which constitute the substance of this report will also be carefully and fairly considered.

“Our resolve to meet the yearnings of Nigerians for a more acceptable and functional constitution remains firm and I assure once again that you can count on us”, he said.

The speaker said that it would be counter productive to underrate the views of Nigerians as they had become more educated on national issues.

Earlier, the deputy speaker, Emeka Ihedioha, said the views of all Nigerians on various issues outlined in the ongoing review of the constitution had been fully reflected in the report.

Ihedioha said that the reports from the public sessions had been painstakingly collated, verified and its integrity could be fully assured.

“This process may not be perfect, but I dare say, that it is the first time in the history of this country that Nigerians at the grassroots level have been made part of the constitution review process.

“We promise Nigerians that we shall be transparent and accountable.

“Indeed, we made a commitment to do things differently in our legislative agenda unveiled at the beginning of the 7th House of Representatives”, he said.

The deputy speaker urged Nigerians to be vigilant and follow through the rest of the constitution amendment to ensure that their views and positions remained respected.