Senator representing Nasarawa South senatorial district Umaru Al-Makura, Sunday, said the National Assembly is working seriously to amend the 1999 constitution so as to meet the yearnings of Nigerians who are demanding a change of constitution.
Al-Makura stated this in an interview with Blueprint in Lafia, Nasarawa state capital.
He explained that the lawmakers of the National Assembly are conscious of the agitation for a constitution prepared by the common people of the country that meets their yearnings and demands hence the priority given to the review of the constitution.
“Like you will agree with me, Nigeria has never had its own constitution prepared by the people, for the people and of the people. The 1999 constitution is not a constitution that any Nigerian will be very proud of because it is not a constitution that has been exhaustively driven by a cross section of the people.
“It is not a constitution that has got the input of every part of this country. That is why we are having problems over constitution review or total change of the constitution. That is why we are having problems with restructuring.
“But what I can say is that Nigerians should be happy that the National Assembly is working seriously to get the constitution amended and in line with the aspirations and expectations of the people,” he said.
He however pointed out that the National Assembly was handicapped in changing the constitution completely because the current 1999 constitution does not allow for a change of constitution completely, except a review.
“The excellent synergy between the executive and legislative arm of government is why we are embarking on satisfying the yearnings of Nigerians to bring about the review and amendments of those throng areas within the constitution that have refused to make things work,” he said.
He also added that once the reviews and amendments of the constitution currently ongoing were completed, the newly amended constitution will be taken to various states assemblies across the country for their own affirmation and inputs before it will be brought back to the National Assembly again for concurrence between the House of Representatives and the Senate.
“Once it is passed, the president will sign it into law and Nigerians will have a sigh of relief of having a constitution that would have taken care of those lacunas that have failed to make for the operation of constitutional democracy work in Nigeria,” Al-makura said.