A cross-section of political scientists in Nsukka, Enugu State, has advocated unicameral legislative system for Nigeria to reduce the cost of running governments.
The political scientists, who are senior lecturers in the Department of Political Science, University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN), said this in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Nsukka on Monday.
They said adopting a unicameral system would not only reduce the cost of running the government but quicken legislative processes in passing bills into laws.
Prof Jonah Onuoha, Head of Department (HOD) Political Science in UNN, said the bicameral legislative system was capital intensive especially in a country like Nigeria where federal lawmakers received bogus salaries and allowances.
“It takes huge amount of money to maintain bicameral legislative system especially in a country like Nigeria where federal lawmakers received bogus salaries and allowances monthly.
“Bicameral legislative system is not only capital intensive but delays legislative processes of passing bills into laws since the bill will pass through the two chambers.
“In Nigeria, we have two chambers comprising the Senate (Upper Chamber) and the House of Representatives (Lower Chamber) but if the country adopts unicameral, it will choose either the Senate or House Of Representative,” he said.
The HOD, who is also the Director of American Studies in UNN, urged the country to adopt a unicameral legislative system as money used to run two chambers could be used to carry out other developmental projects.
He said that if the country insisted on running the bicameral legislative system, number of lawmakers, both in Senate and House of Representatives must be cut down to half as a way of reducing cost.
Contributing, Prof Aloysius Okolie, former Chairman of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) in UNN said that it was a result of the bicameral legislative system in the country that every year the budgetary allocation to National Assembly had remained the highest.
“The country is spending much to pay salaries, allowances and maintaining of the two chambers.
“In Senate, there are 109 senators and in the House of Representatives, there are 360 members, all of them are paid jumbo salaries and allowances,” he said.
Okolie also said that as part of measures to reduce the cost of running the government, the country should return to the regional government as was obtainable in the 1960s.
“If we have one federal parliament and one regional parliament in the six geopolitical zones, it will go a long way in cutting down the cost of running the government in the country,” Okolie said.