Constitutional Review: Make sacrifice for Nigeria – Reps tell consultants

…as Kalu inaugurates 9 man team of consultants, issues appointment letters

…We will not fail Nigerians-Technical Team

Chris Udochukwu

House of Representatives has urged the technical team of consultants for the ongoing constitutional review exercise to make necessary sacrifices for the nation by helping to birth an acceptable, more people-orientated constitution.

The chairman, committee on constitutional review and deputy speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Benjamin Okezie Kalu made the plea at a meeting of the review panel with the 9 man team of consultants chosen to drive home its mandate on Tuesday in Abuja.

The committee also formally inaugurated and issued appointment letters to the consultants.

It also shared the timeline of its workplan with the consultants, urging them to study it and make their inputs where necessarily.

It will be recalled that the constitutional review committee recently unveiled the action plan, targeting December 2025 as the period to conclude its assignment.

Members of the team included Mamman Mike Osuman, SAN; Professor Nuhu Mohammed Jamo; Chief Chris Uche, SAN; Mr. Seni Adio, SAN; Hon. Samson Osagie; Barr. Clement Nwankwo; Prof. Ezeilo Joy and Prof. Ladi Hammalia.

The committee also named Nwankwo the coordinating consultant of the team.

Essentially, the team is mandated to develop a reasonable time bound work-plan for the Committee’s activities in liaison with the Committee Secretariat; advise the Committee on the methodology to adopt in carrying out consultations with stakeholders and interest groups and sieve out germane issues that may arise therefrom.
Develop reliable and appropriate data collection techniques for adoption by the Committee; collate, study, analyze and asses all memoranda received from the public to bring out the issues raised in a structured manner and where applicable draft constitution amendment bills for the Committee’s consideration; analyze and present the data collected in a simple, concise and organized manner for the Committee’s deliberations and consideration to assist in ultimately taking critical and informed decisions and conduct research on bills/measures and policies referred to the Committee and advise on their viability and likely consequences on proposed constitutional alterations.

Other responsibilities were to advise the Committee to arrive at decisions that are fair to all and in accordance with the fundamental objectives and directive principles of state policy; attend all Committee meeting or events of the Committee as may be directed by the Committee or Chairman; produce a comprehensive report in liaison with the Committee Secretariat for adoption by the Committee.

The coordinating consultant was also asked to liaise with his fellow consultants and the Senate to achieve coordinated work and seamless implementation of activities. Any other duty as may be directed by the chairman/committee.

Speaking at the meeting, the deputy speaker charged the consultants to write their names in the annals of history by making necessary sacrifices for the advancement of democracy in Nigeria.

He said: “Today marks a major milestone in the work plan of the Committee with the composition of a Technical Team.
In order to pass the Constitution amendments in record time, I am pleased to announce to you that a 9-man technical team of consultants has been appointed to provide expert input and insights to the Committee’s work.
It is pertinent to note that the selection of the technical team was purely based on merit, expertise and personal capacity.

“You are also enjoined to consider this assignment as a call to duty and your contribution to national development.

“Like I said when I stated that it is not a commercial outing for the consultants because we know we may not be able to afford to pay for your services knowing your status in the society in the work that you do and how well or highly rated that you are. It’s a call to serve your fathers land that when it is mentioned that the constitution of the federal Republic of Nigeria was amended with better attention given to pertinent issues affecting Nigerians that you played a role in pointing the touch light to the right directions, drive away the darkness, various inconsistencies and bottlenecks in our constitution as it is at the moment hindring the advancement of our democracy. We welcome you on board because we know that you have a lot to add to the work we want to do.

“I have no doubt that with the calibre of people seated here who have announced themselves in their chose professions, success is certain. We did not chose you because of your efficient career path, we chose you because of what you represent, a Nigeria that is fair, equitable, a country that believes in democracy.

“Again, I solicit for your optimal commitment and dedication to this all important national call to duty. Write your names in gold with your contributions, sacrifice. Working for the nation, partnering with the parliament will come with a lot of challenges. The parliament will ask a lot of questions in the manner you conduct your duites but I want to assure you, it is only for the interest of the nation that those questions will come.

“We may not based on our resources and tax payers money be able to make you very comfortable in the course of doing this job. Be ready to sacrifice. We know you can and that was why we chose you”.

In their various responses, the consultants thanked the committee for finding them worthy of service.

Acknowledging that it is a national call of duty, they pledged to work effectively to justify the confidence reposed in them by the committee and Nigerians in general, assuring that the team will not fail Nigerians.

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