Autonomy for state assemblies as Buhari signs bills

OrderPaperToday – President Muhammadu Buhari has assented to several constitution amendment bills including one that grants financial autonomy to state houses of assembly and state judiciary in the country.
Another is a bill that prevents a vice-president who completes a president’s tenure from running twice for the presidency.
Addressing journalists on Friday at the Aso Rock villa, Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Ita Enang, disclosed that the newly signed law on the vice president affects a deputy governor, noting that “the effect is that having taken the oath of President once, he can only contest one more time and no more. That is the intent of this amendment.”
He told reporters: “I just want to inform you that His Excellency President Muhammadu Buhari today assented to the constitution fourth alteration Bill which grants financial authonomy and independence to the houses of assembly of the respective states and to the judiciary of the respective states.
“Therefore upon this signature the amounts standing to the credit of the judiciary are to be now be paid directly to the judiciary of those states, no more through the governors and no more from the governors.
“And then the amounts standing to the credit of the houses of assembly of the respective states are now to be paid directly to the houses of assembly of that state for the benefit of the legislators and the management of the states house of assembly of that state. This grant full autonomy now to the Houses of Assembly and judiciary of states.
“Another act which has come into force today is constitution amendment 21 which relates to the determination of pre-elections matters. It has reduced the date and time of determining pre-election matters to ensure that the pre-election matters in court do not get into the time of the elections and do not lend thereafter. The relevant section of the constitution has also been amended by this act, therefore amending the constitution.
“The other one is bill 16 which is now an act. The intent of that Act is to ensure that where a vice-president succeeds the president and where a deputy governor succeeds a governor, he can no more contest for that office more than one more time. The effect is that having taken the oath of president once, he can only contest one more time and no more. That is the intent of this amendment.”
The Presidential aide also disclosed that the bill which would give the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) sufficient time to conduct by-election was signed into law.
“The other amendment is Bill 9 now an Act which It has increased the time from seven to 21 days and generally widen the latitude of the INEC to handle election matters upon vacancy. These four bills, added to the Not Too Young To Run act, having been assented to by the president and have now become laws.”
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