- As Fashola faces Reps’ panel Friday over Budget row
- Vote on new age for president, governors
Despite his health challenge, President Muhammadu Buhari’s performance in the last two years has been rated 57 per cent.
The administration has broken five promises and achieved seven, a report has said.
But the “number of achieved and ongoing election pledges has increased from one to seven, and 45 to 114 respectively in year one and year two”.
The approval rating of the anti-corruption war of the government has, however, stood “fairly high at 52%”.
The economic agenda of the Buhari administration was faulted due to its “inability to translate several monetary and fiscal policies to economic growth and development”.
The administration was cautioned against the use of dialogue and negotiation in dealing with Boko Haram insurgents.
The government’s refusal to obey several court orders demanding the release of a former National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki(Retd), Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and his wife Zeenat was also described as a “serious blight on the administration’s commitment to the rule of law.”
On the agitation for Biafra, the government was urged to go beyond dialogue and negotiation by redressing the developmental issues raised by the Igbo.
These highlights are contained in a report, titled “Buharimeter Mid-Term Report”, which was compiled by the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD)- a non-governmental organisation.
The compilation of the report was sponsored by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the Open Society Initiative for Western Africa (OSIWA).
Signed by the Director of CDD, Idayat Hassan, was based on the 222 pledges made by the President.
According to the report, the 222 election pledges were carefully sourced from (1) APC Manifesto: An Honest Contract with Nigeria;( 2) My Covenant with Nigeria released by the Campaign Team of the APC presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari; and (3) Un-refuted media reports including national newspaper reports and electronic media reports (television and radio) on election promises made by the President during campaign tours.
Meanwhile, the panel of the House of Representatives to investigate the altercation between the Minister of Power, Works, and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN) and the National Assembly will engage the former Lagos State governor on Friday this week, The PUNCH learnt on Monday.
The minister, senators and members of the House of Representives had clashed soon after Acting President Yemi Osinbajo signed the 2017 Appropriation Bill of N7.441tn into law on June 12 over cuts in the budgets of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway and the second Niger Bridge.
Findings showed on Monday that the ad hoc committee, which is chaired by an All Progressives Congress lawmaker from Kano State, Mr. Ali Madaki, had fixed Friday as the meeting date with Fashola.
In a response to an electronic enquiry by The PUNCH in Abuja, Madaki simply wrote, “Friday, 10am.”
Incidentally, the meeting will be held the second day after the House would have probably passed a virement proposal of N135.6bn by Osinbajo on Wednesday (tomorrow).
In the virement, N46bn is set aside for Fashola’s ministry to fill in the budget gaps in key projects that set off the row between him and lawmakers.
Fahola had criticised the decision of the National Assembly to slash the budget of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway from N31bn to N10bn and that of the second Niger Bridge from N15bn to N10bn.
He bitterly complained that the action of the lawmakers had put the hope of early completion of the vital projects in jeopardy, accusing members of stuffing the budget with boreholes and health centre projects.
The minister had summed up by saying that the legislators had “stark, worrisome knowledge” of the budget of his ministry.
His choice of words infuriated lawmakers, who accused him of inciting Nigerians against the National Assembly after Fashola participated in all the meetings leading to the signing of the budget.
In the meantime, members of the House of Representatives will on Wednesday commence voting on amendments to the 1999 Constitution.
One of the amendments intends to lower the age qualification for presidential aspirants to 30 years.
The age bar on other leadership positions like Vice-President, state governors and members of the National Assembly, according to the proposal, will also be lowered.
Under the extant Section 65, the age requirement to contest an election to the Senate is 35 years. For the House of Representatives, it is 30 years.
In Section 106, the age requirement to contest a state House of Assembly seat is 30 years.
For the office of the President, the extant provision in Section 131 is 40 years.
For the office of the governor of a state, the qualification in the extant Section 177 is 35 years.
The proposed amendment also recommends that a Vice-President or deputy governor, whose principal dies in office, shall be entitled to only one tenure after completing the tenure of the deceased.
The recommendations, among others, are in the report of the House Ad Hoc Committee on Constitution Review, which was laid before the House on Thursday.
The committee, which is headed by the Deputy Speaker of the House, Mr Yussuff Lasun, compiled all bills/proposals for amendments to the constitution in line with the legislative agenda of the 8th House.
The Chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Mr Abdulrazak Namdas, told The PUNCH on Monday that the voting on the recommendations was a mandatory constitutional requirement to give legal teeth to a new constitution.
He said, “It is true that we are considering our report on constitution review this week. The first step, which was the committee stage, was completed and we now have the proposals before us. But, more importantly, we have to endorse them or even reject them for the process to continue.
“Besides the voting and adoption of the recommendations, there is the next phase involving the approval of state Houses of Assembly. Good a thing in this review exercise, there has been some synergy between the state assemblies and the National Assembly.
“This is a move to ensure a smooth sailing for the recommendations when they get to the state level.”
The age reduction proposal specifically seeks to amend Sections 65, 106, 131 and 177 of the Constitution. The sections deal with age qualification for the Senate, House of Representatives; state Houses of Assembly; President; and governors.
Nation with additional report from Punch and Citizen