The speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, has lent his voice to one of the pressing issues in Nigeria, which concerns reviewing the Federal Character Laws as enshrined in the 1999 constitution.
The honourable speaker made the revelation during the Young Parliamentarians Forum (YPF) National Strategy Meeting and Retreat in Abuja.
According to him, the need to broaden the scope of the federal character laws in the Nigerian constitution has become imperative.
He is of the opinion that it contrasts with the nation’s realities, as it limits national opportunities to geographical spread alone, without factoring in other criteria like gender, persons living with disabilities, and age classification.
What they are saying
Commenting on the need for the review of the federal character laws in Nigeria, Hon. Gbajabiamila said:
“In thinking outside the box, I think we should consider an amendment in the constitution to the definition of federal character because when we talk about Federal Character within the context of appointments, infrastructure and the rest of it in the constitution, Federal Character as it is, is limited to where you are from, like your ethnicity.
“I think it’s time that we expand the definition of Federal Character because the character of a Nation is not just based on your tribe, it’s based on Religion, it’s based on where you are from, it’s based on your sex, it’s based on your age. So when you are talking about Federal Character you look at all those things and they are what make up the Federal Character.”
The Speaker ended by charging the young legislators to provide solutions to some vital questions on burning national issues.