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Senate Denies Favouritism On New States

Source: EMMA UCHE - thewillnigeria.com
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ABUJA, Nov 18, (THEWILL) - The Senate today denied it has favoured some proposals for state creation submitted to it by different promoters of new state. Senate Spokesman, Senator Ayogu Eze, Senate on Thursday in Abuja said there were allegations that the National Assembly has marked down some states for consideration and possible creation.

“There is no list of states to be created that has been drawn by the National Assembly. That matter is not being considered right now but we hope that we will consider it in the life of this sixth National Assembly,” Eze said.

He said the Senate is currently burdened by the constitution review for electoral reform and would only look into state creation when it is concludes electoral amendments.

“We don’t have any reason whatsoever at this stage to eliminate any request or to include any request because we have not started the consideration of any request. All the requests that have been received are with us, we have not drawn up any list, we have not thrown away any request, and we have not taken any request onboard. All of them are intact as they have been made,” he insisted.

He said the creation of states would follow the same pattern with that of the constitution alteration as outlined in Sections 8 and 9 of the Constitution, reasoning that it is through such process that the lawmakers will determine which states would be created adding that the number of states to be created will be determined by the mood of the public.

He argued that the insistence of the lawmakers that the President need not sign an amendment to the constitution before it becomes operational is not an “ego trip” but a necessary argument that will benefit Nigerians in the end.

He added that the ongoing amendment to the 2010 Electoral Act which will enroll most of the lawmakers in the National Executive Committees (NEC) of their various parties is not self-serving.

“We are not making laws for ourselves because we are not going to stay in the National Assembly forever. We think that if you pull in the representatives of the people into the decision making bodies of the parties, we are making it more democratic; we are bringing in more voices, and views; we are enlarging the political space within the parties and increasing the participation,” Eze said.