The committees for the review of the constitution at the National Assembly have compiled 64 bills proposing various amendments to the 1999 Constitution, The PUNCH has learnt.
This is just as both the Senate and 8th House of Representatives have received hundreds of memoranda from governors/state governments, socio-cultural, political and religious groups as well as individual members of the public.
The Deputy President of the Senate, Ovie Omo-Agege, is Chairman of the Senate Committee on the Review of the 1999 Constitution, while the Deputy Speaker of the House, Ahmed Wase, heads the House committee.
A source close to the committees told our correspondent on Monday that as of July, after the parliament held public hearings in the geopolitical zones across the country, the lawmakers had so far processed 64 bills – 28 from members of the House and 36 from senators.
The official said, “So far, 64 bills have been considered by the committees; 28 from the Senate. More bills have been referred to the committees since July. But work has been suspended to consider and pass the 2022 budget. “After the (Christmas and New Year) break, they will be considered. There is a plan to lay report on the review by January.”
When asked about the number of memoranda so far received, the source said they were in ‘hundreds’, adding that some of them would not be adopted at all.
The official said, “Some of the memos, especially the extremely controversial ones, will not see the light of the day; they are dead on arrival. They will be dropped. But memos have not been considered yet. More are still being presented.
“The Senate and House committees plan to have a joint sitting in January to consider and adopt the new bills and memos.”
The PUNCH had reported on Monday that the National Assembly had suspended the ongoing constitution review for the 2022 Appropriation Bill.
While the parliament had proposed to pass the budget on December 15, sources informed our correspondent that the exercise would not resume until mid-January when the lawmakers would return from Christmas and New Year break.
The National Assembly is billed to embark on holiday immediately after passage of the budget.