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Constitution silent on Jonathan’s tenure, says Omisore

By Gbenga Olarinoye
Chairman Senate Committee on Appropriation, Senator Iyiola Omisore has declared that the Acting President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan may remain in acting capacity throughout the remaining period of the current administration since the 1999 constitution was silent on the tenure of such position.

Fielding questions from newsmen at a programme organised by the Osun State Correspondent Chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, weekend, Senator Omisore stated that while the constitution of countries such as Ghana, Canada and Germany among others stipulate specific period for such office, Nigeria constitution currently in operation did not.

Omisore who cited sections 140, 141, 142, 143 and 145 of the constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria said these relevant sections of the constitution were silent on the tenure to act, adding that “the constitution does not envisage the situation which we find ourselves in the country.”

His words, “take for instance, the constitution of Ghana stipulates that the Vice President will continue to act as the President after 30 days of the absent of the president and will be President after 90 days. Our constitution did not state any tenure for Acting President.”

“This is a serious error on the 1999 constitution and the present National Assembly as presently constituted was preparing to ammend this anomally among others.Unitill this is done there is nothing we can do on this issue in this regard for now,” he added.

Speaking on the electoral reforms, Senator Omisore assured Nigerians that something tangible would be done on it, adding that the lawmakers were only trying to domesticate the recommendations of the committee.

Omisore who is a governorship aspirant in Osun State on the platform of Peoples’ Democratic Party, PDP, explained that there was nothing new in the electoral reforms as submitted by the Justice Uwais panel, adding that the whole essence of the reform is just to checkmate excesses of candidates before, during and after electioneering campaign.

“Despite the fact that this year budget got to the National Assembly very late, its passage was fastest. We are not doing badly at all because there are lot of works to be done on the budget and since I am leading the appropriation committee in the National Assembly, we have done our best for the country. Now that it is passed, all of us must get involved in the budget implementation”, he said.

On the crisis between him and former Governor of the state Chief Bisi Akande when he was his deputy, Chief Omisore said the crisis at that period was as a result of ideological differences between the two of them.

He said that Chief Akande and himself were not in thesame peer group as the former Governor was much more older than him, adding that “as at now the crisis has ended and I dont have any grudge against Chief Akande.I want to say that God has used him to lift me up politically and shape my life. He has really helped me.”

On the allegation that he was having problem with the traditional ruler of his home town,the Ooni of Ife, Oba Okunade Sijuwade, Senator Omisore stated that he enjoyed the best of support from the monarch.

He, however, stressed that though traditional rulers have their prefered candidates amongst the aspirants, it only ended there as the constitutional responsibility of who carries the party’s ticket rest squarely on the party’s delegates.

The lawmaker who assured the people of the state that he possessed all what it takes to govern the state, noted that he has being in the struggle for a very long time.


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