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International Journal of Research and Innovation in Social Science (IJRISS) | Volume VI, Issue VIII, August 2022 | ISSN 2454–6186

Towards A More Perfect Union in Nigeria: Examining the Role of The 1999 Constitution of The Federal Republic of Nigeria (As Amended)

D.O Okanyi, Ugochukwu Charles Kanu*, Leonard Ibekwe Ugwu
Department Criminal Litigation, Nigerian Law School, Nigeria
*Corresponding Author

IJRISS Call for paper

Abstract: The history of the Federal Republic of Nigeria can be said to be replete with the search for effective and efficient models of governance to aid harmonious co-existence among the federating units. This has unfortunately led to an unending discussion on constitutional restructuring. The Legal framework and the institutions charged with the responsibilities of developing these models is and are established by the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended). Nigeria is increasingly becoming a theatre of war and terrorism centre where human life is not valued. Nigeria is stressed and distressed, with ‘revolutionary pressures’ everywhere. How did we get to this gridlock? How do we get out of it? And where do we go from here? Why is a country that was once ranked with India, Malaysia, Singapore, and South Korea still moving in circles instead of moving up? Why are we still a country in transition, more than a century after the Amalgamation? Are we fated to be a banana republic? This paper is to examine, cross-examine and re-examine these and other questions. It is the view of the researchers that all though the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) is not a perfect document, the major problem is that those saddled with the responsibility of implementing the provisions of the constitution are allowing the primordial sentiments of ethnicity and religious inclinations to becloud their sense of patriotism and nationhood, hence the constitution is implemented more in breach and default. There is therefore the need for a mental re-orientation and national re-birth to forge a greater sense of unity among the diverse ethnic groups that make up the Nigerian nation. The paper concludes by suggesting for the rapid mental renovation of political office holders and all citizens to embrace the rule of law where justice, fairness, and equity will regulate human conduct. This will ultimately metamorphosed into building a strong institution rather than strong personalities in Nigeria. The researchers ultimately advocates for sincere implementation of the provisions of the constitution as it is, pending constitutional amendment. The research methodology utilized by the researchers is the Qualitative Research methodology.

Keywords: Federalism; Federal Character; Federal Character Commission; Supremacy of the Constitution