President Muhammadu Buhari (backing the camera) chats up Speakers of the 36 Houses of Assembly
who had paid him a visit on Thursday. Twitter photo/State House
Speakers of the 36 state Houses of Assembly have appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to consider decongesting the Exclusive Legislative List for Concurrent Legislative List to pave the way for the establishment of state police.
The speakers said items such as railway and police could better be legislated upon by the states for the turnaround of the economy and a more secure nation.
The issues were discussed on Thursday during a meeting between the speakers and Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
Chairman of the Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures of Nigeria, Mudashiru Obasa, in a speech presented during the visit, said the request was in line with the agitations by Nigerians for the establishment of state police.
They also appealed to the President to direct relevant ministries and agencies to ensure access to essential health facilities and medical care for the masses at the grass roots.
Agitation for state police has been on. In June, the South-West governors called for the establishment of state police as solution to insecurity in the region and the country.
Obasa said at the meeting, “We wish to join other well-meaning Nigerians to call on Mr President to consider decongesting Exclusive Legislative List for Concurrent Legislative List. We believe some items such as railway, police could better be legislated upon by the states for the better turnaround of our economy and a more secure nation.
“Similarly, while we appreciate many landmark policies introduced by this administration in the health sector; we want to appeal to Your Excellency to charge the relevant ministries and agencies to ensure better access to essential health facilities and medical care by the masses at the grass roots.”
The speakers also requested for an Executive Order from the President mandating the Accountant General of the Federal to deduct from the source the allocations meant for the legislative and judiciary arms of government to ensure financial autonomy.
He said, “Mr President, the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) vests in you Sir the all-important role of protecting the sanctity of the Constitution and we acknowledge that you have done extremely well in this regard for the effective delivery of good governance.
“Your Excellency, recall the 4th alteration to the constitution, having been passed and ratified by the National Assembly and the state assemblies respectively, received your gracious assent on Friday the 8th June, 2018. Among other amendments, the 4th Alteration Act grants financial autonomy to both the state legislature and the judiciary.
“Essentially, this provision envisages that funds meant for the state legislature and judiciary should be released to them directly and to be expended by them and not to be spent on their behalf under whatever guise.”