The Conference of Speakers of Nigeria at the weekend met in Enugu and acknowledged receipt of the transmission of the National Assembly resolution on the proposed constitution amendments.
The speakers also pledged to expedite action on it. Chairman of the conference and Speaker of Kebbi State House of Assembly, Hon. Abulmumin Kamba, who asked the Speaker of Kwara State House of Assembly, Hon. Ali Ahmad, to read the conference communique, said the State Houses of Assembly will immediately commence further legislative actions on the 15 items for amendment.
Ahmad said: “The conference is not unaware of the state legislature’s constitutional role of ratifying the resolution. However, the conference shall ensure due diligence and thorough legislative functions of state assemblies are carried out with a view to ensuring the yearnings and aspirations of the people are captured in the proposed amendments process.”
The speakers further pledged to act expeditiously on the constitution review. Meanwhile, mild drama played out at the conference when a group, friends of democracy, led by a former member of the House of Representatives, Ambassador Jerry Ugokwe, was called to address the conference.
While Ugokwe was addressing the conference on the need to adopt the entire 15 items for amendment since they were not contentious except for local government autonomy, the speaker of Rivers state House of Assembly, raised objection that the visitors came with biased views.
National coordinator of the group, John Mutu, frowned at the resentment by the Rivers Speaker and felt embarassed for asking the group to leave the conference.
The group was however called back and was given more time to address the conference after an apology by the conference chairman, Hon. Kamba. The 36 speakers of the state Houses of Assembly attended the meeting in Enugu.
Enugu State Speaker, Hon. Edward Uboshi, commended the speakers for choosing the state for the conference and announced that the next meeting of the conference will hold in Zamfara State in February, 2018.
Moses Oyediran Enugu