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Proposal for Regional Government System Sent to President Tinubu

In a significant development, a proposal for the reintroduction of the regional system of government in Nigeria has been sent to President Bola Tinubu. The bill, drafted by Dr Akin Fapohunda, is expected to be transmitted to President Tinubu next week, who may present it to the parliament as an executive bill.

The private bill, which aims to bring back the regional government system, is currently being reviewed by the National Assembly and is anticipated to be passed into law before October 1, 2024. The draft bill seeks to address the concerns surrounding the current constitution, which was established through Decree 24 of 1999 by the military government, without the direct consent of the Nigerian people.

The preamble of the proposed bill emphasizes the desire of the Nigerian people for a constitution based on a federal/regional system of government. It highlights the need for the federal and regional governments to operate within the provisions of this new constitution, granting autonomy to ethnic blocs within states to aggregate or disaggregate as provinces, divisions, and districts, while maintaining control over their own affairs.

Furthermore, the drafters of the bill assert that the current 1999 Constitution, as amended, is a military decree and not a product of the Nigerian people’s deliberations and consensus. They propose that the National Assembly has the power to amend or even abrogate this constitution, invoking the doctrine of necessity for the country’s good governance.

Key provisions of the bill include the substitution clause, which suggests that the National Assembly should expunge the schedule attached to Decree 24 of 1999, replacing it with a new governance model for Nigeria, effective no later than October 1, 2024. This amendment would be subject to a yes-or-no vote in a referendum by the people of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Regarding the governance structure, the proposal states that Nigeria shall be a federation comprising of regional territories and a federal capital territory, officially known as the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The territorial jurisdiction of Nigeria would be determined by international agreements, and every ethnic nationality and people in Nigeria would have an unconditional right to self-determination within their delineated territories.

The draft bill also emphasizes the right of every ethnic nationality and people to full self-government, including the establishment of government institutions in their respective territories and equitable representation in both the federal and regional governments.

It is evident that this proposal seeks to address the aspirations of the Nigerian people for a more inclusive and representative system of government. The National Assembly’s consideration of this bill signifies a potential shift towards a regional government model, which could have far-reaching implications for the country’s governance structure. As Nigeria awaits the response from President Tinubu and the subsequent parliamentary proceedings, the nation eagerly anticipates the outcome of this transformative proposal.

SourceThe Punch
Efecha Gold
Efecha Gold
Multimedia Expert, Journalist, and Singer.


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