PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari has pulled the brake on the process of gazetting Executive Order 10 (EO10) following the concerns raised by the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF).
The decision is to give enough time for the resolution of the issues raised by the governors.
Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi, who doubles as NGF Chairman, dropped the hint yesterday in a chat with reporters at the State house, Abuja, after meeting with representatives of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The President signed the EO10, which sought to give autonomy to state legislature and judiciary, a move that did not go down well with the governors, under the NGF platform.
But the governor kicked against the provisions of the Order, citing constitutional concerns.
At a meeting organised yesterday by the Chief of Staff (CoS) to the President, Prof Ibrahim Gambari were representatives of the Fayemi-led NGF, Finance, Budget and National Planning Minister Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, and Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Justice Minister Abubakar Malami. The Federal Government announced that gazetting of the Order will be delayed.
The meeting was attended by governors Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto) and Abubakar Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi).
Fayemi said that after listening to the concerns of the governors about the constitutionality of the Executive Order, President Buhari agreed to delay the gazetting.
He said: “We have a delegation of the governors’ Forum here to discuss some matters of fundamental importance to the nation and the President has asked that we meet with the AGF, the Chief of Staff and the minister of Finance Planning and Budget on the issue.
”It is an issue that has seized the interest of many of you in the media and a lot of people across the federation, it is about the autonomy of the state legislature and the judiciary and we’ve met with the President before now on it and the President was very pleased that for us as governors, we are all united in support of the autonomy of State judiciary and the legislature; that’s the position of the 36 governors of the federation.
“What is the issue is on the constitutionality of the modalities of what had been put in the Executive Order and the President was gracious enough to say ok, given your concerns about that, we will delay the gazetting of the order and allow you to meet with the AGF and Finance Minister out work out the modalities.”
He went on to say that the governors have also been consulting with the Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures, in order to work out an amicable resolution of the matter.
The NGF chair said: “In any case, we have been meeting at our level with the Conference of Speakers. The Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, Governor Tambuwal of Sokoto State, was delegated to lead a number of governors who have gained legislative experience either because they were in the House of Representatives or they were Speakers of State Assemblies, or they were senators and that committee has been meeting with a delegation of the Conference of Speakers, working out the modalities and we believe that all of that would be settled amicably without any resort to court.”