A page document containing a Call for Memoranda by the Committee On The Review Of The 1999 Constitution has been seen on Social Media, alleged to be signed by the Chairman of the committee, Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ovie. A. Omo-Agege. RoundCheck decided to make findings.
Recall that the last Committee on the Review of the 1999 Constitution, a 46-member committee in the 8th Senate was formed in 2016 under the then President of the Senate, Senator (Dr) Abubakar Bukola Saraki with former Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ikweremadu as the Chairman.
As reported by the Vanguard Newspaper, the 9th Senate formed an Ad-hoc Constitution Review Committee of the Senate to handle all bills seeking alterations in the provisions of the 1999 Constitution. The committee was inaugurated on February 12, 2020, by the President of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan.
The, now, 58-member committee was formed after President Muhammadu Buhari returned a large number of bills to the Senate without assenting to them. The committee at its inauguration had only 56 members but 2 members were co-opted.
On August 25 2020, Vanguard Newspaper published that the Ad-hoc made the Call For Memoranda to the general public, Executive and Judicial bodies, Civil Society Organizations, professional bodies as well as other interest groups to submit memoranda or proposals for further alteration(s) of the 1999 Constitution.
Memoranda have to be on the following matters and on any other matter that will promote good governance and welfare of all persons in our country on the principles of Freedom, Equality and Justice, namely: Gender Equality for women and girls; The Federal Structure and Power Devolution; Local Government/Local Government Autonomy; Public Revenue; Fiscal Federalism and Revenue Allocation; Nigerian Police and Nigerian Security Architecture; Comprehensive Judicial Reforms; Electoral Reforms to strengthen INEC to deliver transparently credible free and fair elections; Strengthening the Independence of oversight institutions and agencies created by the Constitution or pursuant to an Act of the National Assembly; Socio-economic and cultural rights as contained in Chapter 2 of the Constitution; Residency and Indigene Provisions. SENATE; Immunity; The National Assembly; State Creation.
The official Twitter of The Nigerian Senate corroborated this on August 27, 2020, with a long thread signed by the Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ovie A Omo Agege. The contents are the same as the page document flying around on Social Media. It reads thus:
THE SENATE ADHOC COMMITTEE ON THE REVIEW OF THE 1999 CONSTITUTION OF THE
CALL FOR MEMORANDA pic.twitter.com/wcaxESWv4L
— The Nigerian Senate (@NGRSenate) August 27, 2020
True, The Ad-hoc Committee had indeed made the Call for Memoranda with a deadline of two weeks.