Traditional rulers press Senate for role in constitution

By Haruna Salami
Traditional rulers in the country under the aegis of Traditional rulers council of Nigeria Thursday stormed the Senate wing of the National Assembly to press home their demand for a role in the governance in the ongoing constitutional amendment.

Chairman of the Coordinating Committee of Nigerian Council of Traditional rulers, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar, Etsu Nupe, who represented the Sultan of Sokoto led the powerful team to the National Assembly.

The Etsu Nupe told the Senate President Ahmad Lawan that giving the traditional institutions a role in the constitution will go a long in ameliorating the security challenges facing the country at the moment.

According to him the Traditional Council submitted a memorandum to the Constitution Review Committee and was shortlisted among the clauses for discussion.

However, during voting on the clause to assign role to traditional rulers, it fell short of the required two thirds by 10 votes in the Senate, while it scaled through in the House of Representatives.

In his response, the Senate President Ahmad Lawan said “there is so much to gain from traditional institution”, adding that the royal fathers  have shown the right way to go, by coming back to Senate, “not blocking National Assembly” in apparent reference to the method adopted by National Council of Women Societies, NCWS.

He said the Thursday meeting with the traditional rulers was to “revisit the process of giving non-executive advisory role for traditional institution”. However, Lawan told the royal fathers that “this is the most difficult time for politicians as party primaries to produce candidates for various offices is around the corner”.

He assured them that the Senate will revisit the issue of constitutional role for traditional rulers, adding that constitutional amendment is a continuous exercise.