It has become clearly entrenched in our culture of leadership not to follow laws, rules, and regulations embedded in governance. History has clearly proven time without number that leaders that take laws in their hands to oppress, exploit and suppress the generality of the people will eventually be at the receiving of its consequences.
I’m irked when people that ought to know better but because of sycophancy and pecuniary interest always prod the leaders to choose the path of impunity, instead of doing things properly.
I have at the back of my mind the brouhaha in the National Assembly on the current wave of defection and other sundry issues in the National Assembly. The present path the presidency has taken by lobbying members of the National Assembly using carrot, or whatever it is, is the most civilized and acceptable path, instead of using the stick approach which was the resort to use of force to stop the presiding officers of the Senate from discharging their duties.
While the presidency is working assiduously to break the ranks of the National Assembly from getting the opposition to form the majority, some habitually impunity prone politicians are at it again, heating the system by implying that presiding officers can be removed by simple majority of members of Senate or the House of Representatives of the majority party. This to me again is choosing the path of impunity and overheating the polity with the attendant chaos and anarchy that may affect the smooth running of government.
Let us look what the supreme law of the land- the constitution says about electing and removing the presiding officers of the National Assembly.
Section 50 ( 1) says “ there shall be:-
(a) a president and Deputy president of the Senate, who shall be elected by members of that house from amongst themselves; and
(b) a speaker and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives shall be elected by members of that house from amongst themselves.”
This is for election, but for removal, the relevant section for the purpose of this discourse is found in section 50 (2c) “ the president or Deputy president of the Senate or the speaker or Deputy Speaker of House of Representatives shall vacate his office-
(C) if he is removed from office by a resolution of the Senate or House of Representatives, as the case may be, votes of NOT LESS THAN TWO-THIRDS MAJORITY OF THE MEMBERS OF THAT HOUSE( emphasis mine)”
I’m not a lawyer but my layman understanding of election of presiding is found in the phrase in section 50 and a and b where it’s stated: “shall be elected amongst themselves.” It didn’t state presiding officers shall be elected from only the majority party. Were it so the election of the Deputy President of the Senate who hails from the minority would have been challenged in the court of law by the majority party and it would have been quashed. I have not gone through the manual of the National If there is a provision that presiding officers will be elected from the majority party. I didn’t bother to do so because any regulations that are inconsistent with the constitution, that law or rule becomes invalid.
Similarly, there is no other way to remove presiding officers other than Section 50(2c). No simple majority but through two-thirds of members. Whether he is expelled from the majority party or whatever sanction, he will be removed by two-thirds of members.
Our politicians have never learned lessons from the past. Definitely Leaders since the start of the third republic have always use impunity to carry out some of their obnoxious actions.
Chief Olusegun Obasanjo was impunity incorporated during his 8 years of governance. He used soldiers to destroy odi in Rivers state because some soldiers were killed instead of apprehending offenders and charge them to court. He did the same thing to the people of Zaki Biam in Benue state. Obasanjo unashamedly extracted resignation letter from the then Chairman of PDP Audu Ogbe under gunpoint and was proud to narrate the story in his book under my watch. He authorized the abduction a seating Governor Ngige by police. Refused to release Lagos Local Government funds even after the judgment of Supreme Court directing him to do so. But the one that haunted and forced him to leave the office unceremoniously was trying to force the third agenda on the people by way of trying to amend the constitution. Here was somebody elected by a constitution that stipulated maximum of two terms for presidents and Governors. He now wanted to retroactively amend the constitution to enable him to serve for three terms.
The amiable Late President Yar’ Adua the only president to date that declared his assets in National dailies could have escaped the use of impunity, but for for the despicable conduct of the katsina cabal that took advantage of his terminal sickness by refusing to serve a Letter to the National Assembly to allow his Deputy Good luck Jonathan to act to the extent that NASS had to do something not known in the constitution- the doctrine of necessity to enable Jonathan to act as president.
President Jonathan impunity was not only restricted to the polity. It was more pronounced in the finances when NNPC and CBN became ATM of government to the extent government funds were withdrawn illegally and used Illegally.
Now a corrective regime has come with the slogan of change and the same agents of change are prodding it to jettison the change mantra and embrace impunity. My honest advice is for mr president with his towering integrity anchored on honesty, transparency, and accountability should ignore these sycophants that will abandon him as soon as impunity comes to haunt him. Mr president should handle the present brouhaha in the National Assembly using due process through consultation, dialogue, and compromises because he needs their stamp of approval for him to discharge his duties. Where they have erred he should use the law courts to bring them to order. Similarly, the president should realize that disobeying court orders is the worse form of impunity which is denting his image nationally and internationally.
I’m not positioned to recommend the people that he should surround himself with. But I have already one fearless truthful man in the person of the Emir of Kano. I stand to be corrected that Emir of Kano Sanusi Lamido Sanusi was one of the few persons whose fearlessness, truthfulness contributed in bringing mr president to power. He exposed the sleaze in NNPC and other infractions in GEJ regime when he was the CBN Governor and was booted out of office. When PMB became president, he didn’t stop in making constructive criticism, especially the management of the Economy, in fact, he was very critical of the corruption infested management of Forex that made billionaires overnight while the local currency continued to plummet. Mr president honestly you need the likes of SLS to make a success of your presidency and not some of these fair-weather friends who-who are not bothered whether you make a success of your presidency or not. Their primary concern is how to maximumly push their selfish agenda.
Mr president no matter how crooked, corrupt, greedy and selfish the present members NASS are you still need them to make a success of your presidency. Making compromises, engaging them in dialogue and lobbying them to get your laudable policies and programmes executed will go along in bringing about the much sought after peace and prosperity in our beleaguered nation.Do you ever witness news, videos, articles, or photos that you believe it's good and rich for our blog?, or do you have a true life story that you would want us to feature on our blog; Adamawa Celebrities News? Kindly submit your stories, pictures, and videos to us now via Email: email@example.com, or WhatsApp: 08051600130Connect on Social Media: @adamawacelebrities