The 36 state governors on Wednesday have called for the immediate dissolution of the Presidential Implementation Committee on the autonomy of state legislature and judiciary, the Premium Times reports.
The committee, set up by President Muhammadu Buhari in December 2018, is the brain behind the Executive Order 10 issued by the President in May 2020, for the enforcement of financial autonomy of the two arms of government at the state level.
The Nigerian governors, under the aegis of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), chaired by Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State, made the call for the dissolution of the committee at a teleconference they held on Wednesday.
In the communique they issued at the end of their Wednesday’s meeting, the governors accused the committee, led by the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, of creating disaffection between state governments and the other arms of government, and therefore called for its dissolution.
The resolution was arrived at during their deliberation on the Executive Order 10, which relates to the ongoing nationwide strike by judiciary workers. The workers have shut down courts across the country for 45 days as of Thursday, in agitation for the implementation of the financial autonomy of the judiciary.
“The NGF resolved to call for the immediate dissolution of the Presidential Implementation Committee on the Autonomy of State Legislature and Judiciary as this Committee is now acting as a permanent committee basically misguiding and overheating the relationship between State Governments and the other arms of government,” the forum’s communique, signed by Mr Fayemi, read in part.
The governors’ call for the dissolution of the committee coincided with Wednesday’s resolution by the striking members of the Judiciary Staff Union (JUSUN) to continue with their ongoing strike until their demand for the financial independence of the judiciary is met.
Executive Order 10 and Malami’s committee
President Buhari had set up the Mr Malami-led committee in December 2018 to fashion out modalities for the enforcement of section 121(3) of the constitution on the financial independence of the arms of government.
The committee recommended the issuance of the Executive Order 10 as an instrument for the enforcement of the constitutional provision which Mr Buhari signed in May 2020.
Names of members of the committee are as follows: Nigeria’s Minister for Justice and Attorney-General, Abubakar Malami (SAN) (chairman); Presidential Liaison to the National Assembly, Senator Ita Enang; Chief Judge of Kogi State, Justice Nasiru Ajanah; Chief Judge of Bayelsa State, Justice Kate Abiri; Grand Khadi, Gombe State Sharia Court of Appeal, Kadi Abdullahi Maikano Usman; and Ag. President of the FCT Customary Court of Appeal, Justice Abbazih Musa Abubakar Sadeeq.
Chairman, Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures of Nigeria and Speaker, Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Mudashiru Obasa; and Speaker, Taraba State House of Assembly, Hon. Abel Peter Riah. Judiciary Staff Union of Nigeria is to be represented by Marwan Mustapha Adamu and Parliamentary Staff Association of Nigeria, by Comrade Bala Hadi.
Representatives of Body of Chairmen of Houses of Assembly Service Commissions, Musa Mustapha Agwai; Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights, and Legal Matters, Senator David Umaru; House of Representatives Committee on Federal Judiciary, Hon. Aminu Shagari; the Accountant General of the Federation, and the Secretary of the National Judicial Council.
Others are: Director-General, Nigerian Governors’ Forum or such other representative as the forum may wish to nominate; Chairman of the Forum of Finance Commissioners in Nigeria; President of the Nigerian Bar Association; and Chike Adibuah, representing Civil Society Organisations.