Jonathan rejects new Constitutional clauses proposed by Senate, House of Reps

Former President, Goodluck Jonathan

President Goodluck Jonathan has rejected multiple proposals laid out by the Senate and the House of Representatives as part of a new Nigerian Constitution, including clauses stipulating free education and healthcare for every Nigerian child.

The president said Wednesday he could not sign the new proposals into law, as expected of him to conclude the Constitution Amendment process, due to irregularities and an attempt by the lawmakers to violate the doctrine of Separation of Powers.

Mr. Jonathan made his decision known in a seven-page letter he sent to the National Assembly, read Wednesday by the Senate President, David Mark.

The president said a proposed clause to give free education and health to Nigerians, cannot stand as presently proposed as the lawmakers failed to state clearly that such privileges could only be accessed from a government school or hospital, respectively.

Mr. Jonathan also said he could not sign a proposal seeking to dispense with the president’s consent in future Constitution Amendments, until the Senate and the House of Representatives provide “credible evidence” showing the plan was approved by the required number of federal and state lawmakers.

The president’s letter read: “May I draw Your Excellency’s esteemed attention to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (Fourth Alteration) Act, 2015 that has been passed by the National Assembly and transmitted to me for assent.

“I have accordingly examined the substance of the provisions and the procedure adopted by the National Assembly to pass the Act and wish to observe as follows: “Section 4 of the Fourth Alteration Act, 2015 seeks to alter Section 9 of the 1999 Constitution by the insertion of a new subsection 3A, which dispenses with the assent of the President in the process of constitutional amendment.

“However, this alteration can only be valid if the proposal was supported by the votes of not less than four-fifth majority of all the members of each House of the National Assembly and approved by a resolution of the House of Assembly of not less than two-thirds of all the States as provided by Section 9 (3) of the 1999 Constitution.

“This is a fundamental requirement of the Constitution and in the absence of credible evidence that this requirement was met in the Votes of Proceedings of the National Assembly, it will be unconstitutional for me to assent to this Bill.

“In light of the above, I am of the respectful view that I should withhold assent until it can be shown that the National Assembly has complied with the threshold specified in Section 9 (3) of the 1999 Constitution,” President Jonathan wrote.

The president also said even where that demand is met, he would still not sign the proposed Constitution into law on account of other proposals that infringe on the independence of the executive arm of government.

“However, assuming without conceding that the necessary thresholds were met by the National Assembly, there are a number of provisions in the Act that altogether constitute flagrant violation of the doctrine of separation of powers enshrined in the 1999 Constitution and an unjustified whittling down of the executive powers of the federation vested in the President by virtue of Section 5(1) of the 1999 Constitution,” he said.

Some of the areas he listed include a provision stipulating guaranteed rights to free basic education to all Nigerian children, saying the plan should have been restricted to only government schools.

Another proposal for free medical services, stated in proposed Section 45b, should make it clear that private health facilities are not covered, the president said.

The Senate Committee on the review of the 1999 constitution said it will hold a two-day retreat to deliberate on the president’s concerns.

The National Assembly passed the Constitutional Amendments and sent them to President Jonathan in December 2014, for assent


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  • burning spear

    ITS MADNESS UNLIMITED—————–Let Buhari take control of it——————-FREE EDUCATION IN ALL GOVERNMENT OWNED SCHOOLS EXCLUDING PRIVATE INSTITUTIONS–THIS WAS HOW DAVID MARK AND TAMBUWAL———-TRICKED JONATHAN INTO APPENDING HIS SIGNATURE—–ON THE VERY ANTI GAY-BILL THE CERTIFICATE LESS BUHARI AND HIS SO-CALLED PASTOR OSINBANJO–PROMISED OBAMA THAT HE WILL REPEAL—-VAGABONDS IN POWER-

    (Some of the areas he listed include a provision stipulating guaranteed rights to free basic education to all Nigerian children, saying the plan should have been restricted to only government schools.

    Another proposal for free medical services, stated in proposed Section, should make it clear that private health facilities are not covered, the president said.UNQUOTE————————— MR. PRESIDENT U ARE 100 PERCENT CORRECT–LET THE INCOMING GOVERNMENT TAKE CONTROL—-OF THE SITUATION——–IS IT NOT MY OIL REVENUE THEY WILL USE FOR SUCH ACTS—-DO THE YORUBAS AND FULANIS HAVE SPECIAL FUNDS TO TAKE CARE OF IT?–AWOOOOOOOOOOOF OIL THIEVES

    • sammy

      don’t you have any good job doing……you are always on the paper making rubbish comments…….please election is over and winners have already been declare…..why is the hatred in you still burning like a mad man……Guy/babe or whoever you are, please free your self from the hatred spirit inside you ,otherwise it could lead you to madness for the next four years…..chow!…what kind of human being are you..everybody have accepted the reality and you still living in darkness…..please change! your ways otherwise your spear will burn you to madness.

  • burning spear

    Some of the areas he listed include a provision stipulating guaranteed rights to free basic education to all Nigerian children, saying the plan should have been restricted to only government schools.

    Another proposal for free medical services, stated in proposed Section, should make it clear that private health facilities are not covered, the president said.

  • Moe

    We should start sending all our presidential candidates to “defeat school”!
    …or don’t you find it amazing how defeat (or its prospect) can make leaders
    start actually governing in the interest of the governed and with respect to the Nations constitution?

    • burning spear

      @ WAHALA THE ISSUE HERE IS A VERY SIMPLE MATTER————–IS THE SO-CALLED FREE EDUCATION FOR ONLY PUBLIC SCHOOLS OR THE PRIVATE ONES AS WELL?————— IF THEY ARE FOR THE PRIVATE ONES THEN WHERE IS THE FUNDING GOING TO COME FROM–THE OIL WELLS IN THE NIGER DELTA? –U DONT HAVE TO BE A LAWYER TO UNDERSTAND SIMPLE ENGLISH–DO U’?

      • sammy

        don’t you have any good job doing……you are always on the paper
        making rubbish comments…….please election is over and winners have
        already been declare…..why is the hatred in you still burning like a
        mad man……Guy/babe or whoever you are, please free your self from the
        hatred spirit inside you ,otherwise it could lead you to madness for
        the next four years…..chow!…what kind of human being are
        you..everybody have accepted the reality and you still living in
        darkness…..please change! your ways otherwise your spear will burn you
        to madness.

      • Omotolaaraujo

        Just a few of your real problems, DumFuk:

        Files Open New Window On $182-Million Halliburton Bribery Scandal In Nigeria

        Crude Oil Theft: PDP Governorship Candidate Jarrett Tenebe Arrested, Implicates Jonathan’s Former Chief of Staff, Anenih, And Petroleum Minister

        OPL 245: As The World Probes, Nigeria Looks Away

    • burning spear

      buhari was first defeated in 2003–with his VP from the South east—————-then moved into it again with another VP from the South east again in 2007—-in 2011 he failed again–so who is supposed to be well groomed in yr so called makaranta for defeatist——Buhari or Jonathan who was in government for 19yrs–compared to buharis two yrs as head of state—————–monkey

  • Curseless

    Tone it down as you always go on tirade on every single topic you read. There is much to gain by demonstrating simple civility.

  • burning spear

    “May we’ll then ask the Nigerian State: is the war on Eastern Nigeria still in progress? On account of these two issues of master-servant constitution arrangements and the question of the ownership and control of oil and gas assets, it is disingenuous to call what we have in place TODAY IN NIGERIA–a democracy and to go round the globe chanting “free, fair and credible elections” whilst ignoring the loud pain-laden protestations of the traumatized and dehumanized peoples of SOUTH Eastern AND SOUTH SOUTH OF Nigeria against an imposed apartheid-like constitution, maintained by an evil alliance BETWEEN THE YORUBAS AND FULANIS in the name of democracy.

    Livingstone Wechie, a human rights activist, WAS RIGHT WHEN HE said the Lower Niger would opt for a referendum to finally decide if it would still remain within the context of Nigeria as part of the contraption in the new dispensation being led by General Buhari as President.

    Meanwhile, the people of Ijaw nation in Rivers State have heaped the blame of President Goodluck Jonathan’s failure in the last presidential election on the doorsteps of the state governor, Rotimi Amaechi, and the All Progressives Congress, APC, which it said worked against the interest of the Niger Delta VIA THE PRESIDENT OF THE USA—ALHAJI MUSA————OBAMA.

    • sammy

      don’t you have any good job doing……you are always on the paper
      making rubbish comments…….please election is over and winners have
      already been declare…..why is the hatred in you still burning like a
      mad man……Guy/babe or whoever you are, please free your self from the
      hatred spirit inside you ,otherwise it could lead you to madness for
      the next four years…..chow!…what kind of human being are
      you..everybody have accepted the reality and you still living in
      darkness…..

      • burning spear

        @wahala—————I have an assignment—-and that is what I am doing——or are u the one who pays my rent–sends my kids to school,-settles my bills for my internet connection—-regional thieves———-let my people go–u who have job–what are u doing here–on the web–‘ singing the praise of rogues like buhari–where is Soyinka has he not gone into hiding————-I operate from where i earn my daily living—on the web————–monkey

        • sammy

          haaa… your madness have started…..i said it….i will not exchange words with a mad man….four years madness..sorry for you…i pray God you recover after four years…but honestly speaking don’t go close to a market place..otherwise,,sorry for you.

  • Dulles2

    President Jonathan is 100% correct

    These are good questions President Jonathan raised. I agree that there is something
    eerie in the National Assembly plotting to exclude the presidency from having any further
    say in future amendments of the 1999 Constitution. That is sheer arrogant parliamentary
    overreach. The Constitution of any country is not the personal property of the legislators;
    not even under a parliamentary system of government. It is silly that the National Assembly
    members cannot think properly. President Jonathan is also correct on the point of phrasing.
    A Constitution phrasing a right to free medical services in absolute terms could be enforced
    against any private clinic or dentist. This proposed 4th alteration of the 1999 Constitution is
    thus without a doubt the most illiterate endeavor by a venomously split National Assembly.
    The bill was rightly vetoed by President Jonathan for good thinking to lead a fresh attempt.

  • burning spear

    Jonathan has always been right————except the janjaweeds——————in the soul of buhari who now says he has to hire experts–to tell him more about the fuel subsidy thing which APC fought tooth and nail to retain-besides what has APC doing all the while-in Chatham house—-with the CIA MI5—————-because most of the contractors are fulanis ati Yorubas——-let my people go———-now u want to turn a simple issue into another wahala–

    • Omotolaaraujo

      You sound like a whimpering child. You must be a recipient of graft, or you wouldn’t complain so much. The money’s going to stop flowing to criminals.

    • Lemmuel Odjay

      Hehehe, BS. Would you ever take no for an answer? But seriously, we need such facilities in our public hospitals and schools giving the huge level of poverty in the Nigerian society. But that costs money. So, dear fat cats, did you think about where to source the money for this projects from? We already have a huge fiscal hole in our pocket, no thanks to the oil price slump we refused to see coming plus the magic economy before now. It’s like these guys seek to “shine off” Jonathan’s hard luck which was partly caused by them. Failure is no longer forgotten or tolerated. From the era of OBJ’s 3rd Term bid which our own David Mark voted for this country has been governed by pretenders and fair weathermen. And now we are stuck in the mud and REALLY in urgent need of alternative sources of revenue we could start off by knocking down some of these quangos they call departments and parastatals, reduce these ministerial offices, refurbish and turn Aso Rock itself into anything less but not more than a 15 bedroom flat. What our fat cats have come up with was too little too late. A face saver. Did they just wake up from sleep? E kabo o…

  • Omotolaaraujo

    What’s the rush? Maybe Buhari will think better of the changes, maybe not. It seems like a ram-job of some legislation that should wait for the new government to determine how the challenges facing Nigerians should be dealt with.

  • Encore

    Buhari submitted false credentials to the Electoral Commission (INEC), by reciting falsely
    in sworn statement that he obtained Wasc/Cambridge certificate in 1961 without attaching
    a copy of the certificate he claims to have obtained to his INEC Form in violation of the

    Electoral Act and thereby violated both the Electoral Act and Section 137 [1] of the 1999
    Constitution, prescribing a penalty of “dis-qualification”.

    • salihu

      This one nko

  • seemeseetrouble

    Encore:

    Buhari is in soup. What is he going to say now? He already swore on oath that his credentials
    are with the Army Board. The Army has refuted that. The Army said it NEVER keeps anyone’s
    original certificates. Which new excuse can Buhari tender to the court?

    John Oyegun, the APC Chairman even almost spoilt the case by saying General Ibrahim Babangida
    sent troops to Buhari’s house in 1985 and those troops destroyed Buhari’s certificates in the process of
    overthrowing General Buhari in 1985. But where are Buhari’s testimonials of school attendance
    and completion in lieu? Did General Babangida’s soldiers destroy those ones too? Haba!

    These are very childish lies, i beg!

    Even Tunji Abayomi – APC Legal Adviser – spun his own yarn the other day. He said Buhari
    should be compared to a brilliant student who had always come first in class but just a day
    to his WASC exams, the brilliant student went and raped the daughter of the English teacher.

    Well, well, well. After this rape narrative by Tunji Abayomi, the public has reacted with deep
    revulsion that Buhari won’t look the same again on the way to the court.

    • Freeman

      ..

      • salihu

        How about this?

      • Omooodua

        “Professor Jega of INEC is only trying to shift responsibility by saying people
        opposed to Muhamadu Buhari’s qualification for the polls should go to court.
        I heard the APC saying Buhari has been contesting election for 12 years,
        and that nobody said anything about it, so, why now? And my answer,
        in form of question is, if someone has been committing robbery and
        getting away with it, the day he is caught, you are now asking,
        why has he not been caught all this while? Buhari is NOT eligible
        to run. That is the law.”

        ………..Chief Ayo Adebanjo

        (Afenifere Chieftain)

        (January 25th, 2015)

    • Wole Dairo

      @semeseetrouble:

      TUNJI ABAYOMI WAS HONEST TO TELL THE TRUTH THAT BUHARI
      WAS EXPELLED FROM SCHOOL BEFORE THE WASC EXAMINATION.

  • David Adeniran

    419 President.

  • Micheal Olawale

    first of all i don’t care if Mr President signs anything or not but the fact that this media house refers to our President as ”Mr Jonathan” is very disrespectful and something should be done about it he is still President no matter what and should be known and remembered for that please the editorial crew should look it into this.

    • Sheik Faruk

      it seems like you need to see an optician, or may be you need to improve your reading skills