ABUJA, NOVEMBER 30, 2016 – A Bill seeking to amend the 1999 Constitution and limit the tenure of a president and governor on acting capacity to a single term passed a second reading in the House of Representatives on Wednesday.
The amendment bill which is sponsored by the Chairman, Special House Ad hoc Committee on the Review of the 1999 Constitution, Deputy Speaker Yussuff Lasun.
The bill provides that no person who had held the office of president or governor of a state or acting as president or governor of a state for more than two years of a term to which some another person was elected president or governor, shall be elected to the office of president or governor of a state more than once.
The aim of the bill is to give constitutional protection to the two-term tradition as contemplated by virtue of the combined provisions of sections 137(1)(b) and 182(1)(b) of the Constitution.
These sections provide that the president and governor of a state shall serve in those capacities for a maximum period of eight years.
However, the Constitution equally envisaged circumstances where a person can be chosen to act as president or state governor, such as when the president or a governor resigns, dies or is impeached,” Lasun said.
If passed, an acting president or acting governor who served for more than two years in a four-year term shall only be eligible to contest election to the same office only once.
This proposed amendment, the deputy speaker said, was inspired by the 22nd amendment to the constitution of the United States of America.
It provides that “no person shall be elected to the office of the president more than twice.
“And no person who has held the office of president or acted as president for more than two years of a term to which some another person was elected president shall be elected to the office of president more than once”, Lasun added.