Governor of Imo State, Senator Hope Uzodinma on Wednesday night hosted Chief Whip of the Senate and former Governor of Abia state, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu in Imo State Government House Owerri.
Kalu who earlier presided over the South East Zonal Public hearing on the review of the 1999 constitution held a private discussion with the Governor that lasted for more than two hours
ABN TV learnt that the discussion was centered on political and economic prosperity of the South East.
The two-day constitution review event which was held simultaneously across the nation witnessed the attendance of Imo and Abia State Governors, Senators; Frank Ibezim (Imo North) , Enyinnaya Abaribe (Abia South), Theodore Orji (Abia Central), House member Mbano/Okigwe/Onuimo Hon. Miriam Onuoha, Speaker of the Imo House of Assembly, Hon Paul Emeziem, Youth groups, Traditional and religious groups, security agencies, legal associations, and other various advocacy/civil society groups.
Senator Orji Uzor Kalu had in his opening remark on behalf of the Deputy Senate President and Chairman Senate Committee on review of the 1999 constitution, Ovie Omo Agege advocated for the devolution of powers, Judicial and Electoral Reforms, and Local Government Autonomy.
Kalu posited that amendment of the nation’s constitution will solve the majority of the nation’s current challenges while stating that commitment of the Senate and it’s counterpart at the House of Representatives to provide an amended constitution that speaks the challenges and represents the interest of the citizens.
According to Kalu “The Senate has decided to adopt a bottom-top approach by first listening to Nigerians at the geo-political level. This approach underscores the critical importance the Constitution Review Committee places on the subnational levels of governance in Nigeria.
“There’s a need to address, by way of Constitutional Amendments, topical issues like Judicial and Electoral Reforms, Local Government Autonomy, and devolution of powers.
“The Senate Committee on the Review of the Constitution is mindful of the recurring clamour for constitutional amendment or review over the years.
“Since the return to constitutional democracy in 1999, many have argued that the 1999 Constitution is not a people’s constitution. In other words, it has been argued that it was written and forced down on us by the military without any input from “We, the people”.
Senator Kalu assured of the Senate’s preparedness to amend the nation’s constitution to reflect the interest and current challenges of Nigerians.
He said; “Undoubtedly, this places on us, the Senate and our counterparts in the House of Representatives, a herculean task of giving the people a Constitution that speaks to these challenges and one which our citizens can truly call their own.
Declaring the event open, Governor of Imo State Hope Uzodinma ascribed the various agitation in the country to the defects in the current 1999 constitution saying the legal document was inherited from the military government and lacks democratic inputs.