A BILL to restrict president, governors who have acted for two years to contest only one term is being proposed by chairman of the Special Ad-hoc Committee on the 1999 Constitution and deputy speaker of the House, Hon Yussuff Lasun.The bill provides that “no person who had held office of president or governor of a state or acting as president or governor of a state for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected president or governor shall be elected to the office of president or governor of a state more than once.”
The proposed bill was contained in a press statement issued by the chief press secretary to the deputy speaker, Wole Oladimeji. Lasun said the aim of the bill, which has scaled first reading on the floor of the House, was to give constitutional protection to the two-term tradition.
He cited that by virtue of the combined provisions of Sections 137(1)(b) and 182(1) (b) of the constitution, the president of Nigeria and governors of a states would serve in those capacities for a maximum period of eight years.
The deputy speaker further noted that the constitution equally envisaged circumstances where a person could be chosen to act as president or governor, including when the president or a governor resigns, dies or is impeached.
Lasun said if the bill was eventually passed, a person who is chosen to act as president or governor of a state and served for more than two years in a four-year term wouldl only be eligible to contest election to the same office only once.
The deputy speaker said he was inspired by the 22nd amendment to the constitution of the United States of America, which states that “no person shall be elected to the office of the president more than twice and no person, who has held office of president or acted as president for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected president, shall be elected to the office of president more than once.”
He explained that the bill also sought, among other things, to compel president and governor to attach intended portfolio of office of all ministerial nominees and commissioner-nominees before submission to the legislature for screening.
Recalls that in June 2016, the ad-hoc committee adopted the report of the 2014 National Conference as part of its working document. The decision to adopt the report of the National Conference was taken at a working session/retreat of the committee held at Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja It was learnt that some of the salient proposals in the report would be turned into draft bills, which would be presented to the House for adoption and passage