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Yar’Adua: Reps to alter contentious section of constitution

…seeks automatic transfer of powers to VP

By Tordue Salem

ABUJA—The House of Representatives has begun the alteration of contentious section 145 of the Constitution to provide for an automatic transfer of Presidential powers to a Vice President after a President fails to transmit a letter to the National Assembly within three weeks of his absence from the country.

The Bill also seeks to amend section 190 to let same apply in the case of State Executives or Governors of States.

The Bill, which is expected to receive accelerated consideration is sponsored by Deputy Minority Leader, Rep. Suleiman Kawu and 33 others.

But a member of the House of Representatives from Ikorodu/Lagos, Rep. Abike Dabiri said the Bill would only address the power vacuum problem in a long term and blamed the leadership of the House for not allowing enough members to contribute to debate on the present ‘power vacuum’ in the nation.

“The Speaker should have allowed every member who had something to say on the Yar’Adua matter to say it. He should have allowed everybody to contribute. Allowing only 6 people to talk, of which three of them are from the leadership is unfair. Most of our constituents want to hear what we have to say on this matter”, she said.

The Bill is entitled: “A Bill for an act to amend the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Cap C23 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 to make provision for the Vice President and Deputy Governor to assume and discharge the functions of the President/Governor during their absence of or temporary incapacity and for matters connected therewith, 2010”.


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