National Conference: Northern delegates allege “third term agenda” plot for Jonathan, others 

National Conference in plenary

National Conference delegates from the 19 northern states, under the aegis of Northern Delegates Forum, NDF, have accused the confab leadership of harbouring a third term agenda for President Goodluck Jonathan and other present political office holders with the introduction of a purported new constitution for Nigeria.

Addressing a press conference at Gombe Jewel Hotel, Abuja on Tuesday evening, the leader of the northern delegates, and former Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Coomassie, said the NDF became suspicious of the confab leadership and its agenda when a June 30 front-page report of a national daily newspaper alleged that a member of the leadership of the conference had been lobbying members of the Northern Delegation to to smuggle in a “new constitution” at the conference.

The delegates were on Monday given copies of the conference report and a new draft constitution seeking to replace the existing one.

The Chairman of the conference, Idris Kutigi, and his Deputy, Bolaji Akinyemi, did not turn up at the conference hall when the report was distributed. The secretary of the Conference, Gloria Azinge, who stood in for the chairman, informed delegates that there there would be no plenary discussion as earlier scheduled.

She told them that the secretariat would distribute copies of the confab report, a draft of the constitutional amendment suggested by the conference, as well as a draft new constitution and a bill to introduce the amendments.

While addressing the press conference, Mr. Coomassie, apparently upset at the emergence of the draft new constitution, recalled that a delegate drew the attention of the Conference to a new constitution under matters of national importance.

He said at the time, when the confab leadership was asked to make a categorical statement on the issue, the leadership claimed ignorance of any such document.

“We know nothing about the paper in circulation. We know nothing of the consideration of any Committee, we formed no Committee apart from the standing Committee we set up …We are not aware of that…We have nothing to do with it. That matter should be closed,” Mr. Coomassie quoted Mr. Kutigi as saying in a copy of the Conference Hansard of Monday, June 30.

The former police chief said ordinarily, the matter of a “new constitution” should have died a natural death after the pronouncement by Mr. Kutigi.

“But that was not to be. The issue was brought over and over again in the course of plenary sessions, but each time it was overwhelmingly rejected by the delegates.

“And when attempts were made to bring in the issue of “referendum”, as a means of actualising the outcome of the conference, it was always strongly and painstakingly explained that the operating Constitution does not have any provision for such a referendum,” he said.

He added that the only instance when a referendum can be held is in relation to the creation of new states or boundary adjustment, per the provision of Section 8 of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution 1999.

Shocking, disappointing attempt

Mr. Coomassie said delegates were surprised, shocked and disappointed by the sudden appearance of a “New Draft Constitution 2014”, among other documents distributed to delegates on Monday.

“We, Northern Delegates to the Conference wish to assure patriotic Nigerians, and all lovers of democracy, that we are neither privy to, nor were we accessory to the emergence of the controversial “New Draft Constitution 2014”.

“We, therefore, unequivocally disown it, and emphatically disassociate ourselves from it. Accordingly, we will have nothing to do with it, for the following legal, moral and political reasons,” he said.

Why we are protesting

The NDF, through Mr. Coomassie, explained that delegates to the conference were not elected, and therefore lack both legal and moral authority to draft a new constitution for Nigeria.

“Rather, we were constituted to serve as an ad hoc advisory mechanism to the President, as representatives of broad interests across the federation, and cannot, therefore, legally arrogate ourselves the far-reaching function of making a “new” constitution for the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” he said.

He said a new constitution can only be done by an appropriately constituted Constituent Assembly.

He added that the Secretariat of the Conference has indicated in chapter seven of the draft Report Vol. 1 that the ‘new Constitution’ is to be brought into effect through a national referendum to be specifically held for the purpose.

“To this we say, without any fear of contradiction, that there is no legal provision in our Constitution for the holding of such a referendum,” he said.

He also said the reference to a referendum by President Jonathan in his inauguration address at the National Conference on March 17, was purely speculative, as it was predicated on the National Assembly introducing a provision in the Constitution that will permit the holding of referendum.

“We want to say, with authority, that such a proposal has since been turned down by the National Assembly,” Mr. Coomassie said.

He said that inquiries at both the Senate and House of Representatives have since shown that efforts at tabling the case for referendum, through private member-bills, were rejected twice, and therefore, cannot be reintroduced in the life of the present Senate.

Third term agenda

Mr. Coomassie said going by permutations, it is clear that the conference has been infiltrated by fifth-columnists whose goal is to subvert democratic processes and plunge the country into deeper, but avoidable political crisis.

“To all intent and purposes, the introduction of a “new Constitution 2014” for Nigeria, is a calculated attempt by some people to take advantage of Court of Appeal’s ruling in 2003, as delivered by Justice George Adesola Oguntade, (JCA as he then was) in the celebrated case of Attorney-General of the Federation Vs. ANPP, and Others (A.G, Fed. v. A.N.P.P. [2003] 15 NWLR (Pt. 844).

“Wherein Governor Abubakar Audu of Kogi State (then) was challenged over his eligibility to run for a second term in 2003, having had a first term which ended in May 2003.

“The contention was that having been elected Kogi State Governor in 1991, his tenure 1991 – 1993 should be regarded as a first term and the tenure 1999 – 2003 should have been regarded as second term. Accordingly, he should stand barred from contesting for another term in the 2003 election, as that would amount to a violation of the subsisting Constitution, which has provided that a person could only be elected into the office of a State Governor for two terms and no more.

“In that decision, the Court of Appeal upheld the eligibility of Governor Abubakar Audu of Kogi State, to stand for re-election as Governor, on the ground that his first tenure (1991-’93) was under a completely different Constitution (CFRN 1989), while the country was at the material time operating the 1999 Constitution, which was a new Constitution,” he said.

Mr. Coomasie said in the opinion of the NDF, adopting a new Constitution is calculated to enable incumbent elective office holders who are statute-barred from going for third term at both Federal and State levels, to run for offices again under the guise of running under a new Constitution.

“This will also have the consequential effect of depriving aspiring politicians from all political parties, as well as all Nigerians, of their rights to choices and preferences as enshrined in the constitution.

“If not arrested, the 3rd Term agenda, as in the past (2005), is capable of plunging Nigeria into another circle of political chaos with potential of violence and anarchy,” Mr. Coomassie said.

Those who attended Tuesday’s briefing alongside Mr. Coomassie include former FCT Minister and Co-Chair of the NDF, Jerry Useni, Iyorchia Ayu, Bashir Dalhatu, Muktar Mohammed, Awwalu Yadudu, Jonathan Temlong, and many others.


DOWNLOAD THE PREMIUM TIMES MOBILE APP

Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD: Revealed!!! The Only Way Left of Getting an Extra Large Manhood and also Last Up to 38Mins+. Get the Insider Secret Here


All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.


  • Dan Fulani

    Where does the Conference member from Billiri who promised to to take his people to the middle belt stand?

    • djay

      What do U mean by taking his people to the middle belt?

      • Wähala

        He meant taking his people to Cameroon… was what the Alhaji from the North, a Chief, once teased.
        Don’t mind him!

        • redeem

          (This New Nation called Nigeria, should be an estate of our great grandfather, Uthman Dan Fodio. We must ruthlessly prevent a change of power. We use the minorities in the North as willing tools, and the South, as conquered territory and never allow them to rule OVER us, and never allow them to have control over their future.” —Sir Ahmadu Bello, Sardauna of Sokoto in THE PARROT of October 12, 1960) Unquote-this what the whole rubbish is about——-nothing about 3rd term—-was boko haram not introduced by the fulani b4 the confab-i begi

          • checkmate

            BANZA! Learn how to use quotation marks before concocting and writing your rubbish. You lack the intelligence to write something meaningful. MUMU OGOGORO BRAIN!

          • redeem

            @Wahala–ibo teacher don’t teach me nonsense-confine yr regional thoughts to the topic under discourse———-we are not discussing about human meat here————–biko–if u want that go to the Onitsha bridge head—————-

          • Easy

            Try to write when not drunk. I know you can’t stop that your ogogoro but give it a try. It will help you to think well, stop lying and writing rubbish.

          • Garden-City Boy

            For those whom the truth hurts……. we salute you with eternal curses.

          • Easy

            Lies upon Lies always. That is the meaning truth in your Ijaw language. You will live with lies and die in it.

    • djay

      history shows that middle belt shares social and cultural affiliation to the north, so politically it will be deceiving for anyone to think the middle belt will align politically to the south.

      • redeem

        Who has been killing Boroms in Jos Plateau————state————–is it Yorubas————–what about the Tivs in Benue

    • redeem

      (This New Nation called Nigeria, should be an estate of our great grandfather, Uthman Dan Fodio. We must ruthlessly prevent a change of power. We use the minorities in the North as willing tools, and the South, as conquered territory and never allow them to rule OVER us, and never allow them to have control over their future.” —Sir Ahmadu Bello, Sardauna of Sokoto in THE PARROT of October 12, 1960)

      • checkmate

        Banza! Learn how to use quotation marks before concocting and writing your rubbish. You lack the intelligence to write something meaningful. MUMU OGOGORO BRAIN!

        • redeem

          @wahala–kana-hawka–Yamiri banza—————–Ibo—teacher do not teach me nonsense———with your human eating head——————————

          • Easy

            Hahaha! Shege I got you. You are drunk.

  • Goodluck_Nigeria

    NIGERIA URGENTLY NEEDS ANOTHER CIRCLE OF POLITICAL CHAOS WITH POTENTIAL OF VIOLENCE AND ANARCHY !!

    It is only the North that really still needs Nigeria and they need Nigeria badly ……. but unfortunately the South-South, the South-East, the South-West and the Christian North/Middle Belt are completely fed up with Nigeria as defined by the born-to-rule and born-to-ruin Northern Muslim Hausa-Fulani ……. they want out !!!

    I am completely convinced that the sure result of another circle of political chaos with potential of violence and anarchy will be the conclusive end of Nigeria as presently defined by the born-to-rule and born-to-ruin Northern Muslim Hausa-Fulani ….. to the relieve and delight of the South-South, the South-East, the South-West and the Christian North/Middle Belt.

    The military wing of the Northern Muslim Hausa-Fulani died with the death of Gen. Sani Abacha while the political wing of the Northern Muslim Hausa-Fulani died with the death of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua …… these deaths are significant and post a strong message >>>>> the reign and domination of the lousy Northern Muslim Hausa-Fulani over Nigeria is OVER !!!

  • Psalm 35

    I must congratulate PT on its objective reportage and mode of relaying news content without bias or partisanship. I must say this is a welcome comfort for some of us that erstwhile depended on the dwindling saharareporters for investigative journalism. As we do away with anything that has to do with a one man-show saharareporters, I call on PT to continue on this path of objectivity, truth and non bias, your exclusive yesterday on Gov Lamido was striking and commendable. I congratulate you for a job well-done and hope you occupy this flagship space for a long time to come.

  • Goodluck_Nigeria

    If their problem is the so called “third term” possibility ……. then why don’t they push for for a clause in the constitution that will take care of their fears ?

    The so called Draft constitution is merely what I would call a suggestion and a proper summary of the work of the conference …. what is wrong with that ?

    • Wähala

      What is wrong with is clearly elucidated in the contention of the Northerners… why can’t the South be honest and gentlemanly in their dealing with the North? Dumbo first turned coats by denying rotation existed in their PDP agreements, now that he has realized he’s ineligible to contest the next election, he’s trying to tinker with the Constitution that is under review already at the NASS… why, eeh? Did he tell Nigerians about a Draft Constitution during his inauguration of the Confab… why always deceit? The man Dumbo is a crook and I will continue to call him a, “humble crook” because he’s a wetback silent venomous snake. Nothing good can ever come out of him, always dubious. Drafting a New Constitution is not in their mandate and corrupt Kutigi knows that much… why was he a no-show at the presentation of their bride? C’mon man! “Googluck” has simply run out of runway… Shikena!

      • redeem

        (This New Nation called Nigeria, should be an estate of our great grandfather, Uthman Dan Fodio. We must ruthlessly prevent a change of power. We use the minorities in the North as willing tools, and the South, as conquered territory and never allow them to rule OVER us, and never allow them to have control over their future.” —Sir Ahmadu Bello, Sardauna of Sokoto in THE PARROT of October 12, 1960)—————–

        • redeem

          The trouble with u is that u do not think b4 u post yr regional comments–put the rubbish aside——the fulanis are not different from the janjaweeds in APC—–let us for once put this ALLEGED 3rd term rubbish away for a moment- and ask the Fulanis to tell us why they refused to give the SS–resource control–or back fiscal federalism–has these issues anything to do with the so called THIRD TERM AGENDA—–of jonathan——-? WAITING FOR AN ANSWER—–

        • Checkmate

          Banza! Learn how to use quotation marks before concocting and writing your rubbish. You lack the intelligence to write something meaningful.

          • redeem

            Yamiri banza———————answer the question –if its about chopping human meat 3 times a day yes——–I concede that to you————————-

          • Easy

            Try to write when not drunk. I know you can’t stop that your ogogoro but give it a try. It will help you to think well, stop lying and writing rubbish.

  • Wähala

    Thanks Premium Times for your lucid coverage of this pesky issue other outlets have been dancing around. Bottom line like I’ve always maintained at SR is, Dr. Dumbo is not eligible for election under this Constitution… shikena. A senior PDP stalwart, Mr. Eze, who first challenged his Party on that is lavishing in Kuje prison charged with raping his wife, his lawyer fled from assassins into the German embassy in Abuja. Why is Dumbo so desperate? What has he achieved in over 5 years as President? Re-elections are earned, not “human right” to anyone. Kutigi is a very corrupt old fossil who should be ashamed of himself. This is how they disrespect themselves for dirty crumbs. The moment Dumbo made about-turn on Confab was when Tinubu said no one should trust him. Today, is Tinubu and the APC who boycotted the confab not justified? Tinkering with the Constitution is not part of their mandate and the North and other well-meaning Nigerians must stand against any New Constitution drafted by Dumbo’s hand-picked stooges delegates and a corrupt ol’ Kutigi.

    • ismail umar

      Kutigi has come out to deny all such claims, Stop building castles on the air. There was no Agenda for a third term claim. The northern delegates are acting to a script from the APC. They are not lawmakers, they are chosen to propose possible ways to promote the nation, We all agree that bureaucratic loopholes are existent in our constitutions that needs to be sealed up so i don’t see the reason for the chaos. the allegations are mere speculations.

      • kick ’em out

        “mere speculations” will turn out to be true. Time will tell, PDPig.

        • ismail umar

          I appreciate every ones resolve to be proactive but i like when there is an accusation it should be based on facts, Insulting people without evidence speaks more about ones’ self. Now that Kutigi has denied it, was all the insults worth it ?

          • kick ’em out

            it is. Take it!

          • peter

            I see you scrambling to reply every one, You have an agenda, don’t you ? why struggling to impose your opinion ? Some People are more intelligent that others, Learn to accept it.

          • Easy

            …and what of you? why trying to stop people from expressing their opinions? Does everyone has to be dumb to accept your opinion? Try to be civilized.

  • larry

    These northern elites or cabal who thinks nigeria belongs to the north.So GEJ and the region he
    comes from cant also share power.Now , for once we have seen the weakness
    of the so called northern elite.They only believe in nigeria when they
    are in power.Yet all they have to show for all the years of military
    rule is an army of alamajeri .The tables have turned.

  • ismail umar

    This speculation is purely made up by the Northern delegates ? it is a ploy to present the President in a bad light. A proposal for 3rd term can never be successful in Nigeria, we saw that with OBJ, they are merely creating this hostility based on speculation and bias. The chairman has rightly come up to say there are no such plans.

    • checkmate

      Ebola Jonaharam is already in bad light. Only sane people will understand this. He is a total mess to this country.

      • ismail umar

        I don’t know who goes by that name.

        • Easy

          That’s why you replied because you know who goes by that name, EBOLA JONAHARAM.

      • peter

        Do you really criticize people based on speculations ? Hear from both parties before drawing a conclusion

        • redeem

          that is that insane wahala for u—-the ibos call his type efulefu———————

  • peter

    Mr Idris Kutigi has called an emergency sitting to quell the rumor as it is not worth mentioning. There are no such plans to draft any constitution and the Northern delegates are now aware that they were being swayed by sentiments. the goals has always been to propose possible amendments to the constitution and every delegate is entitled to air his views and opinions.

  • redeem

    time to sack dasuki ati gusau and badey is now-and by-the way allow us express our God given views freely–dont gag us–biko———freedom of speech–u say when u abuse the president–but when we respond to yr insult–u block us out—–why——–why censor us for APC–

    • Easy

      “——I told u that Obj was not instrumental to picking jonathan————late Yara Adua did–tambuwal will go the way of ribadu and co—————–for get him————-is he not fulani——-the more fulanis we have the better for Jonah” – redeem. SO WHY THE SACK NOW??? You are contradicting yourself. YOU A CONFUSED OGOGORO BRAIN!

  • Dr Patrick Kolawole Awosan

    President Ebele Jonathan’s called national conference ulterior motive agenda is the new draft-constitution which would grant
    president Ebele Jonathan automatic ticket for his third term without chaos or cry from the people of the Northern parts of Nigeria whom he promised only one four years term in 2011.

    South-West Chief Obasanjo did eight years and North supposed to have their eight years turn but due to the demise of late president Umaru Musa Yar’dua,Ebele Jonathan was installed in his place.At the completion of Yar’dua’s first four years term
    by Ebele Jonathan,the Nortrh should have been allowed to have their second term,but Ebele Jonathan promised Northerners he would spend only one-term in office in addition to the remainder of Yar’dua’s first term he completed.

    But now Ebele Jonathan being very untrustworthy and non-transparent intends to play Northerners again in order to stay in office till 2019 without any visible structure of accomplishment.All the numerous promises of regular power,good roads,modernize teaching hospital-healthcare,employment provision for unemployed graduates have not be been accomplished.Nigeria is divided by Ebele Jonathan’s dubious and corrupt-ridden government.Ethnic/tribal/religious sentiment have been deeply, entrenched by Jonathan in governance.

  • Victor Odutola Mayomi

    Thoughtful and offers a different perspective in economic management. The idea is not really new. Putting money into people’s pockets to enhance production and national productivity has been used in many nations to advance the welfare and progress of societies. I recall the late chief Obafemi Awolowo advocating this same policy thrust as a way of combatting unemployment in his presidential campaign in the second republic. The lesson from the recently concluded elections in Greece is instructive. Economies don’t grow through contraction pivoted on austerity measures but on carefully designed policies aimed at increasing the productive capacity of the state.