By Ikenna Uwadileke
Abuja – The House of Representatives on Thursday reviewed and considered 34 Bills from the harmonised report of the Special ad hoc Committee on Constitution Review.
At its plenary session, the House passed 27 of the 34 sections of the constitution listed for amendment in the Fourth Constitution alteration bill.
The House, however, voted against power devolution to give more legislative powers to states and the removal of the Land Use Act from the Constitution.
The lawmakers also rejected a bill that sought the appointment of Minister from FCT and change of name of some local government councils.
The House also rejected the proposal for the separation of office of the Attorney-General of the Federation/State from the Office of the Minister/Commissioner of Justice.
The Citizenship and Indigenship bill, which is a major recommendation by the Committee on the Review of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), was also rejected.
During the electronic voting, 274 lawmakers voted for members of the Council of States to include former Senate Presidents and House of Representatives Speakers as members with six voting against it while two others abstained.
While 295 voted for the reduction of authorization of expenditure before budget passage from six to three months, 261 supported the reduction of age for election.
Also the bill proposing financial autonomy for state legislature was approved with 286 votes, 10 voted against and one abstained, while 291 voted in support of financial autonomy to Local Government Areas.
The bill seeking to alter sections 65, 106, 131, and 177 of the constitution to expand the political space and broaden options for the electorate by allowing for independent candidacy in all elections was approved.
The lawmakers approved alteration of sections 4, 51, 67, 68, 93 and 109 of the constitution to provide immunity for members of the legislature.
The immunity is in respect of words spoken or written at plenary or at committee proceedings.
While the approval for 35 per cent affirmative action for women got 248 votes in the House, the bill was rejected in the Senate on Wednesday.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that 49 senators had voted in favour of the bill with 43 senators voting against it while two abstained. (NAN)