Lagos-based legal luminary, Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, has called for the abolition of what he called ‘selective immunity’ for public office holders.
“If the president, vice-president, governors and deputy governors who are leaders of the executive arm of government currently enjoy immunity, nothing stops the heads of other arms of government from enjoying similar privileges”, he opined in his comment on whether or not the immunity clause in the constitution should be amended to include the Senate president, Speaker of the House of Representatives and their deputies as well as Chief Justice of Nigeria.
According to Ozekhome, the present selective immunity would make the executive arm feel superior to the other two arms of government.
The prominent lawyer, who was weighing in on the controversy whether the National Assembly leaders should enjoy immunity, said Nigeria should either choose to abolish the immunity clause in its entirety or extend it to other arms of government.
He said, “If the President, Vice-President, Governors and Deputy Governors enjoy immunity, then the other heads of the remaining two arms of government, that is, the Senate president, Deputy Senate President, Speaker, Deputy Speaker and Chief Justice of Nigeria should also be availed”.
“It is either we scrap the immunity clauses for all officials of government or make it more encompassing. The selective immunity as it currently stands makes the executive feel superior to the legislature and judiciary”, Ozekhome added.