A former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Prof. Tam David-West, has frowned at the plan by President Goodluck Jonathan to forward the outcome of the proposed national conference to the National Assembly, saying they lack the power to amend the constitution.
David-West, who spoke in Ibadan, Oyo State on Wednesday, argued that both the President and the National Assembly members seem not to understand the constitution they are using for governance.
According to him, Section 9 of the 1999 constitution was very clear on the steps involved in the amendment of the constitution, which is contrary to the current amendment plans.
He described their efforts as a mere “waste of time.”
His words, “I am concerned and very much worried for some time now over how the amendment of the constitution is being discussed by the National Assembly. I was one of the few people that drafted the 1979 constitution and it is almost the same thing as the 1999 constitution. It is clear to me that neither the National Assembly nor the President had any power to alter or add one word to the constitution. I am surprised that they have not been called to order by the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) or any of the numerous legal luminaries in the country.
“I am saying this because Section 9 of the constitution clearly provides for how the constitution can be altered or changed. All what they have done so far are completely at variance with what is provided for in the constitution. It is an exercise in futility!”