Thoughts Lead To Appreciation
Are there any positives for the citizens of my great nation in the fourth alteration of the 1999 Constitution?
The first benefit for Nigerians is the clarification of indigeneship.
The National Assembly approved a provision that a Nigerian automatically becomes an indigene of a state after ten ~10 years of continuous residency in that state.
This removes the requirement of consent of the relevant state governor.
Not to mention, the issue of host community versus resident community is henceforth nuanced.
Patriotic Nigerians are advised to practise the response:
I am from here
whenever anyone raise a snout that one is not from here.
Here, of course, refers to any state with emphasis to the North.
A second crucial advantage of the fourth alteration to the 1999 Constitution is the provision for an independent candidate for elective offices.
This lifts the burden of putting up with the People’s Democratic Party ~PDP and the All Progressives Congress ~APC, the two main political blocs in Nigeria.
At present, one can only feel empathy towards citizens who have no alternative but to vote for candidates whose party members are mere beer-parlour gossips.
A member of one party commences a rumour against the other party and the electorate fall head first into validating or disproving the rumour.
A better option in subsequent elections – post 2015 – available to Nigerian voters is to ignore both parties and vote for an independent candidate.
Free basic education as well as free primary and maternal healthcare have become rights of citizens.
Let us hope citizens become aware of their rights and live by those rights.
There is need for enlightenment programmes to facilitate the fulfillment of those rights.
In addition, the assent of the President is no longer required for further amendments to the Constitution to be binding.
Bills passed by the National Assembly or State House Of Assembly automatically become legal after 30 days, even if not signed by the President or Governor, respectively.