THE LEGISLATURE IN
EMERGING DEMOCRACIES: CHALLENGES AND PROSPECTS
BY DR. ALI AHMAD, RT. HON. SPEAKER,
KWARA STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY
A Lecture Delivered at
the Maiden Annual Birthday Lecture Series in Honour of Professor Epiphany
Azinge, OON, SAN, Held in Abuja on Monday 14th November, 2016
I received the invitation to deliver the above-mentioned
topic by the organisers of the Professor Azinge Lecture Series, I jumped at it because
of the calibre of the personality involved, a personality that has served this
country meritoriously in various capacities. I also jumped at the opportunity
because it is an area that is mostly misunderstood by Nigerians, even among
senior lawyers, because our country has not had the opportunity of a long and
consistent practice of democracy so there have been limited number of fat
briefs for our erudite lawyers coming out of legislature-related altercations.
Only recently has the Nigeria Bar Association introduced a sub-session on
Legislative Practice during its annual conferences, while a new sub-association
was also established named Legislative Lawyers Association of Nigeria.
has many paraphernalia and several institutions. Although largely unwritten in
the sense of having them prescribed or legislated upon in codes and statutes, the
paraphernalia of democracy are all well-known and fully expounded having been derived
from centuries of expositions and practice. On the other hand, formal
democratic institutions are largely stipulated in law books and constitutions,
except for those countries with unwritten constitutions. Of
all democratic institutions, the legislature is the most visible for effective
functioning of the democratic process. A government (with a benevolent
executive and blooming judiciary) without a legislature is something but not
democratic. So it is fair to state that there can be no democracy without the
have always been raised about our obsession with democracy if countries like
Dubai would attain the level of developmental heights envied by everyone
without any pretence of being democratic. One way to view this is to ask whether
Dubai is the rule of the exception. Whichever it is, democracy is merely a
tested process of exercise of governmental powers, it does not guarantee a
Dubai-like development. As a process, what it guarantees is long-term,
predictable exercise of power by a class of rulers for a common good and who
are not able to be tyrannical even if they want to.
achieve progress, democracy does not trust individuals with the destiny of the
people, it places its trust on a defined system of societal ordering. If we
still lack progress and good governance in Nigeria despite the fact that similar
countries like Singapore have achieved a lot, we should blame not democracy,
indeed blame less our leaders, but blame more the people, for with them belongs
the ultimate power in a democracy.
observed above, the cynosure of democracy is the legislative branch of
government. There is no doubt that these are turbulent times for the
legislature in Nigeria, as is largely the case in other emerging democracies.
But it must be said from the outset that in spite of the cardinal principle of separation
of powers and strong constitutional provisions to that effect, not a single executive
arm of government anywhere in the world, not even in developed democracies,
wants a strong and stable legislature. The weaker the legislature, the more
satisfied and happy the executive. It is the people and other democratic
institutions that insist on a strong legislature. To ensure effective balance
of power, some advanced democracies even go to the extent of voting a
particular party in the executive and another in the legislature. Thus, apart
from being the major difference between a dictatorship and a democracy, the
legislative arm, where it is strong and stable, has become the primary scale to
measure the level of development of a nation’s democratic experience. 
Nigeria, the legislature, for the right and wrong reasons, is gleefully
subjected to ridicule and condemnation on a daily basis, to the delight and
amusement of the executive arm. For the wrong reasons because the public is
less familiar with, and appears uninterested in, the legislative process and functioning.
For the right reasons because some but not all legislators truly earn the
opprobrium visited on them. The difference is that while some members of the
executive are isolated for condemnation and insult when they misbehave, the
misdemeanour of a single legislator is always visited on the entire federal
legislature which comprises of 474 very different and diverse individuals.
essay, we are set to evoke our thoughts on an arm of government that is
vilified by the public, merely tolerated by the executive, often critiqued by
the judicature but yet very important to the very operation and survival of
democracy. At the end, a single recommendation, signifying a birthday gift,
will be put forward.
2. EMERGING DEMOCRACIES
democracies are defined as countries with governments that have emanated out of
a perceived legitimate democratic electoral process but are still saddled with
complexities of dominant political parties and poorly applied rule of law. Public
institutions are weak and democratic ethos and traditions are not firmly
rooted. Emerging democracies grapple with problems of incoherent body of laws
and weak institutions, allowing some political leaders the leeway to abuse the
system through clever and sometimes blatant actions, such as appointment of
unprincipled and very partisan personalities to head such institutions.Africa's
legislatures have been described as ‘emerging institutions of horizontal
This is because, due to high turnover rate, its legislatures lack the requisite
knowledge and experience of the legislative process.
The lack of technical competence has also reinforced the phenomenon of non-attendance,
lateness, gangsters and lack of decorum, which are gradually becoming
characteristic of parliamentary assemblies in Africa and other parts of the
if not all, legislatures from developing countries may be classified as
emerging. The executive arm will almost always work with, work against or, if
everything else fails, go after the legislature before derailing democracy or
becoming autocratic. For instance, President Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua and his
wife are at the same time currently running for the presidential and vice
presidential tickets respectively in the upcoming election in the country. He
is favoured to win the ticket, for the fourth time. To achieve this rare feat
in a democracy, he emasculated the legislature by changing its leadership and
expelling 16 members of the parliament who were opposed to the manner of
sub-national levels, legislatures are even worse off because less attention is
paid to them locally and internationally. In our states in Nigeria, the
Governors are so powerful that even federal institutions located in those state
are subject to the whims and caprices of the governors. State legislators,
including presiding officers, are either subservient to the governor or they
are removed brazenly or locked up at detention facilities.
3. CHARECTERISTICS OF THE LEGISLATURE IN
legislature is the embodiment of the will of the people. The bits and pieces of
constituencies congregate to form one unit, representing the entire country.
The legislature is far closer to the people than any other elected official who
shares similar authority. A federal, state or local government legislator is
closer to his people than the President, the Governor or local government
chairman. In Africa, the legislature makes a difference in societies that are
used to concentration of power in one individual and it is still true that the
temptation is still high for the possibility of such power concentration. Where
the legislature lacks muscle, presidential abuses of power—including
interference with the media, social institutions, and elections—frequently
ensue, even under presidents who take office with reputations as democrats.
do not exist in vacuum. The very existence of legislature derives from a constitution and
that constitution not only determines its existence but stipulates its basic
powers and its relationship to other state organs and to the citizen. Fundamental
to determining the legislature's role in a democratic polity is the type of
political system stipulated by the constitution, whether it is a parliamentary,
presidential or semi presidential/hybrid system?
parliamentary system, elements of the legislature form part of the government.
The Prime Minister exercises considerable executive power and answers to the legislature,
and there is either no president at all or a largely ceremonial one. This system
is suspicious of presidents with real executive powers. The dependence of the
head of the executive or the Prime Minister and his government is extolled. No
matter how powerful a Prime Ministers appears to be, she serves at the pleasure
of her control of majority and can be dismissed when her party loses that majority. This totally contrasts with the rigidity of
the fixed terms that Presidents serve.
presidential system, the President is directly elected while other members of the
executive are appointed by and answerable to the president. One of its main
features is separation of powers. It is
argued that the presence of two arms of government (the executive and
legislature), each with its own source of electoral legitimacy, reduces the
danger of major missteps. A president,
elected directly by the people, can embody the national will better than any
legislature or legislator-executive. Also as a unitary actor, the president may
be more capable of rapid and decisive action than a legislature or a Prime
The semi- presidential or hybrid system combines the features of both the
presidential and parliamentary systems.
of the system of government, a weak legislature will invariably expose
democratic discontent. It is even worse when a weak legislature is faced with a
very strong executive. A legislature is weak when it lacks the institutional
capacity to be influential in lawmaking and oversight.
Unfortunately, this is the position in many emerging democracies in Africa. The
degree of legislative capacity among African legislatures varies deeply across
African countries. While the legislature remains weak in some countries, in
others it exhibits vigorous activism in terms of checking the executive,
contributing to the processes of policy-making, and indeed as a monitor of
is rise of an autonomous legislature in Kenya, and to some degree in Nigeria,
Uganda, and South Africa. In Kenya, the legislature has successfully
established its autonomy from the executive as well as steered that arm of
government into acceding to extraordinary amendments, to its proposed
legislation and budget.
Even further, activities of the legislature have exposed corruption within the
executive, compelling, in some occasions, the executive's termination of such
fraudulent activities. In
South Africa, the legislature's enhancements of executive-proposed legislation
have permitted the executive to accomplish policy objectives hitherto reached
In Uganda, professional budget offices have been established to assist
parliament engage a more assertive role in the budget process.
the relatively weaker legislatures such as is existent in Benin, have made
little impact on the policymaking process and the operations of the state.
Therefore, the contrasting accounts of the performance of African legislatures
suggest that some emerging democracies have augmented their strength and
capacity, while others have not.
4. LEGISLATIVE ROLE AND PROCESS
the legislature or the National Assembly is made up of 109 Senators and 365
members of the Houser of Representatives. Every
member of the National Assembly has a minimum of 5 legislative aides. The
bureaucracy that supports the legislature is the National Assembly Commission;
and the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies provides
high-level technical support for legislators. In all, N115 billion was the
total budgeted amount for the entire legislative arm and its support services.
legislature conducts its affairs largely through committees and decisions are
couched as resolutions. Resolutions are arrived at after debates and voting, in
which the majority’s decision, normally simple majority unless otherwise
required in very limited circumstances, is taken as the decision of the entire
committee or house.
role of a legislator is to represent his constituency at the federal or state
level, to make laws and conduct oversight functions over the executive. Part of
the role of providing check and balance to the executive is to approve
appointment of some key members of the executive and judiciary.
the legislative process, cognizance is taken of rules and procedures governing
the process. In Nigeria, the first source of the legislatures’ procedure, is
It spells out the powers and limitations, of the National Assembly, in the
exercise of its legislative functions.
The second is the legislature's Standing Orders, created for the orderly
functioning of the parliamentary process, generally with constitutional
Orders or Rules are statements describing the manner in which parliament should
proceed under various circumstances. However, they do not meet the needs of
every situation. Even so, they cannot be ignored or violated, the House can
amend them or vote to suspend one or more of them if necessary.
of legislative practice and procedures is a challenge in Nigeria’s legislature.
Even where huge resources are devoted to training the legislators and their
staff, the high turnover rate at the legislature after every election cycle,
implies that the training exercise will be repeated.
5. SEPARATION OF POWERS: BETWEEN THE
ABORTED PARLIAMENTARY AND THE PROMISING PRESIDENTIAL MODELS IN NIGERIA
of powers is the hallmark of the presidential system of government. But before
adopting the current presidential system, Nigeria experimented with the
parliamentary one. The British colonialists bequeathed their version of parliamentary
model of government to Nigeria at independence. The Prime Minister and other
Ministers were elected members of parliament, meaning that there was effective
synergy and iteration between those who were only legislators and the few that
combined legislative and executive functions. Everyone was conversant with
matters that were discussed or debated in parliament and there was no issue
with non-implementation of resolutions once they were passed. Governmental
power was fused in parliament and the parliament was supreme. 
But then, the First Republic was truncated and it was believed that the
parliamentary system, not being suited to the Nigerian complex society, might
have contributed to the failure of the Republic and the country went for a
full-blown presidential system of governance. The system is working in the
United States and other countries with similar complex and federating units
like Nigeria, and the choice of a presidential system was irresistible.
its history at experimenting with the Parliamentary model, it was thought that
a hybrid of Parliamentary and presidential system would have been considered,
but Nigeria adopted the United States model of presidential system since 1979 Constitution
hook, line and sinker. With the presidential system in place, executive and
legislative powers are now separated and demarcated. It is appreciated by all that separation of
powers is at the heart of the presidential system.  Looking back though, it seems what we fail to realise
in practice is that non adherence to the principles of separation of powers is
highly injurious to the presidential system of government.
powers are separated to allow each branch exercise the powers allocated to it
without any member of the other arms egregiously participating in the exercise
of such power.
It is elementary to note that separation does not mean to be aloof and to not
cooperate or work with other arms; that would stall any government. However, it
seems a sizeable number of Nigerians have a problem in relating theory with the
practice of separation of powers. They cannot understand how to keep power
separated and at the same time cooperate meaningfully to achieve the aim of
government. You either totally fuse
legislative and executive powers (in this case by ceding the powers to the
executive) or construct a wall of demarcation between them where belligerency
Governor Balarabe Musa Regime during the Second Republic typifies this mindset. 
To most Nigerians, the objective is to exercise such power irrespective of
whether it achieves any good at the end. Power is either separated to allow no
rapport, or it is fused, such that the other arms, especially the legislature,
are subservient. Examples abound in our state legislatures: the House of
Assembly must be cowed and become an appendage or another Ministry under the
executive, that is fusion. If the Assembly resists and seeks a little mind of
its own, then it is recalcitrant and antagonistic and will be treated as an
opposition and starved of funds. To gladiators of power in majority of the
states in Nigeria, power is either fused or exclusively separated. Neither is a
true representation of the principle of separation of powers in theory and
analysing the practical relationship among the three arms of government among
one another and within the context of separation of powers, we need to look at
each arm of government more closely.
5.1 The Executive
role of the executive is the clearest since all human societies are familiar
either at the most basic or highest levels of one type of exercise of executive
power or the other. Power is synonymous with the executive branch and power is
intrinsic with it. The power to run and steer government belongs to the
executive exclusively, with the exception of a few administrative powers
donated to the heads of the other two arms to be exercised only within the
confines of their jurisdictions. 
the most visible arm of government that exercises governmental power under the
presidential system, the executive branch seems to represent and symbolise the
government. Its relationship with the other two arms is therefore marked by a
situation where one powerful arm is encroaching or usurping the powers of
others. The other two arms are neither in a position nor able to encroach on
the powers of the executive. It is therefore beneficial to look at the other
two arms as they relate to one another
5.2 The Legislature
Legislature-executive relationship in Nigeria is the most turbulent. As
indicated above, the executive merely tolerates the legislature and the best
wish of any executive is to not have a strong and independent legislature. The
executive in Nigeria does not cherish power sharing with an equally vigilant
legislature that will act to balance its enormous powers. This wish is what has
characterised the usual attempt by the executive to determine and interface
with the process of choosing leadership of the legislature. At the state level,
this is the general rule and no speaker emerges without the consent or approval
of the "Executive" Governor. Indeed, these governors have taken this
wish further so that in a situation where, when they are inaugurated, they meet
a serving speaker who has served a previous governor who could not be
re-elected. The in-coming governor will always find a way to kick out such
speaker, as happened in Kogi State recently. In other rare instances where the speaker's
political party is different from that of the governor and the speaker dares to
emerge in spite of manoeuvres from the governor, as exemplified in Plateau and
Benue States recently, then the speaker has to defect to the political party of
the Governor to save his seat.
the federal level, it used to be no different since the Second Republic when we
started operating the presidential model. However, the idea of determining the
leadership of the National Assembly became brazen during the Obasanjo era. Professor
Oko has documented this contest in his latest book.
The practice changed partially during the last days of President Obasanjo. It
was first the House of Representatives during Speaker Na'abba that liberated
the House from the fetters of President Obasanjo. Expectedly, he paid the
humiliating price of pioneers and he also lost subsequent election but ever
since, the House of Representatives has never been the same again on matters of
choosing its leaders. The executive would try but it has always failed. The
game however continued at the Senate until the 8th Assembly of Senate President
Saraki. As usual, the pioneer Senate President, like Speaker Na'abbah, has to
pay and he is paying the price by being hounded from one criminal court to the
the Senate being on board, the National Assembly has completed the full cycle
of independence as any legislature in the democratic world can aspire to be.
The consequences flowing from the ability of the National Assembly to resist
external influence of the executive in choosing its leaders have been largely
unappreciated by many. It is however, one of the greatest achievements of our
democratic experience since independence. That is how legislatures in advanced
democracies behave. If we have not done so, we shall soon begin to reap the
fruits of this independence. Our hope is that no President will henceforth burn
his fingers in trying to force leadership candidates on the legislature.
reason there is no balance of power at the state level where we have lord
governors is traceable to the inability of the legislatures to freely choose
their leaders and this will continue until the proposed constitutional
amendment guaranteeing financial autonomy for state legislatures is achieved.
An independent state legislature will check a governor ten times more
effectively than an EFCC and ICPC combined. The reason every governor or
executive finds forcing leadership on the legislature attractive is that it
allows the governor to intimidate and bully the legislature. Where the
executive fails to achieve this aim it then chooses to isolate such
at the federal level, analysis of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government since
inception no doubt is one of aloofness and isolation of the legislature. Like
the typical Nigerian executive who either overawes or isolates the legislature,
President Buhari has not sought much rapport or association with the
legislative arm unless when it becomes absolutely and unavoidably necessary.
When this happens, governance and the people become the victims. For instance,
the Senate and House of Representatives passed a joint resolution inviting
President Buhari to address the National Assembly on his plans of getting the
country out of recession. 
For over one month now and still counting, the executive has not reacted to
that letter. Not surprisingly, the Senate roundly rejected his request for
approval to borrow $30 Billion Dollars.
So it is the citizens that suffer from infraction of the basic democratic tenet
of inter-arm respect and cordial relationship.
practised around the world, separation of powers, especially under the
presidential system, refers mainly to the ability of one arm to exercise the
powers allocated to it solely to the exclusion of all other arms. It is true
that an arm of government may willingly donate, permit or allow another arm to
exercise any of its powers in a defined, limited and specific circumstance and
that is alright. What cannot be done legitimately is for one arm to exercise
the powers of another through usurpation and without the prior approval or subsequent
ratification of the other.
drive home the point, a judge cannot legislate but he can fill in the gaps in a
legislation to carry out the intention of the legislature.  Even
when the effect of their decisions amount to law making in circumstances where
the gap is so wide, judges deny it because they cannot formally exercise that
power. In any event, even in this limited circumstance, the legislature in theory
acquiesces to the encroachment. Where it disapproves of it, the legislature
amends such legal principle in a subsequent legislation. This is what happens and it is the practice
in all presidential systems, including Nigeria. A ready example is the recent 'legislation'
by the Supreme Court that the running mate of the Kogi gubernatorial candidate
cannot step into the shoes of the main candidate who died after the elections
but before the final tally of the results. There
was a gap in the law of succession, as there will always be since the
legislature cannot envisage every rare incident. However, the current attempt
by the National Assembly to change the effect of the Court's decision in Faleke's
case shows its disagreement with the exercise of donated legislative power by
the court. 
Another example is the decision in Saraki v. Federal Republic of Nigeria. 
of the case, in democratic terms, is interesting. For one, the Court declared
that there was no gap in legislation in the case; only conflicting laws. The
case was about the quorum of the Code of Conduct Tribunal. The Constitution
provides for three number of judges. while another legislation, which is lower
in hierarchy than the constitution, provides that two members will suffice. In
resolving the conflict, the Supreme Court upheld the inconsistent law over the
provision of the Constitution. The legislature however disagrees and believes
that what the Court did, even though the Court said there was no gap, was to
create another law of quorum for the Tribunal. The legislature has just amended
the law to provide for a minimum of three judges as the quorum.
poignant instance where the legislature sought to overrule the judiciary with
regard to the legislature's ultimate power of lawmaking was the issue of
legislative immunity. The law provides for legislative immunity for all
legislators on things done or said inside of the legislative chamber.  In
Nigeria, the court struck down the legislative immunity for constituting an
ouster clause and thereby being inconsistent with the Constitution. In
response, the legislature had no problem whatsoever in nullifying this decision
of the court by attempting to insert it in the current constitutional
From the above analysis, it is clear that where there is a conflict between
exercise of legislative power by any arm of government and the legislature, that of the legislature prevails. In other
words, with regards to lawmaking the legislature is supreme.
Nigerian legislature is or, to be more precise, used to be so generous in
allowing others exercise its function. This is however changing and the
legislature is becoming as protective as
the judiciary in the exercise of its constitutional powers. Until recently, it
allows the executive to make laws and without any recourse back to it. This
doctrine of legislative power to the executive is known as power to make
subsidiary legislation. And the executive exercises this power without recourse
to the legislature for approval. An extreme version of this is contained in Section
315 of the Constitution which allows the President or Governor to amend certain
laws. In the pre-1999 Constitutions, the power of the executive was limited to
mere changing the laws but in the current Constitution it has been extended.
The President or Governor as the case may be can now amend, add, subtract or
even repeal such laws as are called “existing laws”.  And such amendments or repeals stand without
any scrutiny by the legislature!
recent times however, perhaps due to frustration with excesses by the
executive, the legislature is awake and is mulling the idea of reigning in some
of the donated legislative powers to the executive. Several attempts have yet
to see the light of the day, except for an Act that this writer anchored during
the Seventh Assembly. Due to several
operator-regulator conflicts, the National Tobacco Control Act, 2015 is a
ground breaking law that had languished for decades at the National Assembly
without seeing the light of the day. Any tobacco law must be dynamic and give
the regulatory agency the flexibility to react and respond to multiple tricks
used by the multi-billion Naira industry. Even then, we succeeded, perhaps for
the very first time, in inserting a provision in the law requesting the
regulator to come back to the legislature with any subsidiary rules or
regulations it seeks to enforce.
therefore, the Federal Ministry of Health along with its agencies and
interested local and foreign civil society organisations are about appearing before
the Senate to seek its approval for the draft Tobacco Control Regulations 2016
before enforcement. When two arms of government protect their own turfs but
still lend cooperative relationship to one another in a positive way, that is the
doctrine of separation of powers at work at its best. With such cordial
relationship between the Committees of Health of the National Assembly and the
Ministry of Health, it will be inconceivable for the Ministry or any parastatal
under it to treat with levity any resolution of the legislature, resulting into
overall development of the sector.
5.3 The Judiciary
the province of the exercise of legislative power is blurred by free donation
of some of its powers to other arms, that of the judiciary is clear cut. In
practice, the judiciary does not only protect its interpretative and
dispute-settling powers, it expands them. The judiciary almost always frowns at
the other arms pretending to usurp its powers. Of all the three arms of
government in Nigeria, the judiciary is reputed to be the most protective of
its powers. It guards its judicial powers with extreme jealousy, frowning at
any pretence by other arms, especially the legislature, to exercise such power.
In Elrufai V. The Senate, a case that typifies where the legislature tries to
engage in any determination that looks like passing judgment, the court wasted
no time in nullifying the decision of the legislature. It held that the
Nigerian Senate could not ban a former Minister of the Federal Capital
Territory from politics on account of having found him culpable for corruption.
That was judgmental, an exclusive preserve of the judiciary.
there are administrative tribunals and mechanisms of quickly settling minor
disputes but even then all these powers are exercised by the other arms subject
to approval and confirmation by the judiciary. I have not come across an
exercise of judicial or quasi-judicial power by any non-judicial body to be so
absolute as to completely shut out the courts. Even in the practice of arbitration,
awards by an arbitral body. This is because when a party disagrees, arbitral awards
are not conclusive until the courts agree to shut out the doors against
court's protection of judicial powers from encroachment or usurpation by the
legislature knows no bounds. It has come up with what it refers to as ouster
clause. Any act of parliament that pretends to prevent, exclude or negate the
exercise of judicial power is shut down by the monster “ouster clause” maxim. Once a law is seen even remotely as
containing anything that restricts court’s consideration of the matter, it is
considered to contain an ouster clause and the law is quickly annulled. A typical ouster clause that courts strike
down in a legislation would normally prevent a court from entertaining or
listening to a particular matter.
instance, in Peter Obi V. House of Assembly, the court in Nigeria shot down the
globally recognised norm in every democracy of the principle of parliamentary
immunity, whereby anything said or done inside the chambers of a parliament by
a legislature is protected from legal enquiry. This limited, chamber-based
immunity expands the freedom of expression of the legislature beyond the one
granted the general citizens and grants them unlimited freedom of debate to
ensure that no legislature is sued for defamation or subjected to criminal
prosecution for whatever happened inside the parliament. This
is akin to the judicial immunity accorded judges to protect them from liability
from anything they do arising out of performance of their judicial function.
While Nigerian courts uphold judicial immunity, they strike down legislative
immunity on the basis that it constitutes an ouster clause. Sadly, the point
can be made here that our courts are wont to strike down such practice as
parliamentary immunity, or any process that is inherent in a democracy and
couched under any law on the basis that it constitutes a bar to exercise of
far we have looked at the concept of separation of powers and postulated that
it grants ultimate power to each arm of government to exercise such power
exclusively, save the ones it willingly donates to other arms. And even then,
the donor of that power usually reserves the ultimate right to approve or
reject such exercise of the donated power. Of course, each arm cooperates with
other arms and each, by being the ultimate holder of its own power, acts as a check
and balance to one another. We have said this much about exclusive exercise of
power and power sharing and donation in some limited circumstances. The next
germane issue is the situation where an arm of government seeks to prevent
another arm from exercising that other's constitutionally approved power. This phenomenon
is not common in developed democracies but is a hallmark of emerging democratic
6. SEPARATION OF POWERS: NEUTRALISATION
OF LEGISLATIVE POWERS BY THE EXECUTIVE AND JUDICIARY
major difference that separates developed and emerging democracies is the
attempt by one arm to unlawfully prevent or scuttle the exercise of power by
another arm. The situation here is different from usurpation of power where,
for example, the legislature passes what looks like passing a judgment. What we
are describing here is a situation where the executive or judiciary seeks to
prevent the legislature from exercising its legislative powers. However, since legislature is the bastion of
democracy, it is the target of this game of power neutralisation. Other arms of
government do not experience this frustrating phenomenon. 
executive and, to some extent, the judiciary always target the legislature more
than the legislature can or has ability to estop the other two arms from
exercising this power. It may actually be a convenient barometer of choice when
determining maturity of a country’s democracy to consider how often has an
attempt been made against the legislature to prevent or illegally stop it from exercising its
powers. Such neutralisation may be active or passive. It is active when the
undermining arm of government takes positive steps to achieve the aim, while
passive neutralisation is achieved by leaving undone what is required to be
Nigeria, two methods have been used to undemocratically neutralise the power of
the legislature. It is either through the judiciary or by violence. An example
is when legislature was shut down and teargas was used on legislators during
the First Republic. Shortly before the 2015 general elections, this ugly
incident repeated itself where someone in the police or other security
hierarchy ordered the withdrawal of security details of the then Speaker of the
House of Representatives, teargased legislators at the precinct of the National
Assembly and locked up the National Assembly.
This was done to prevent the House of Representatives from considering certain
issues related to change of its majority leader. The gory incident in 2016 of
locking up for several days the entire leadership of the Zamfara House of
Assembly by the Chairman of Nigeria’s Governor’s Forum the SSS Headquarters in
Abuja is still fresh. They
were locked up to neutralise their power to cause inquiry into some
expenditures by the Governor. The Speaker of Kogi State House of Assembly was
literally forced out of his office by five of the members backed by the Police
the National Assembly passed a resolution and a court issued an order for his
but the executive branch refused until the Speaker ultimately resigned. 
then use of force, as we have just indicated, is not as widely used in Nigeria for power
neutralisation as is the use of courts to achieve that purpose. Sadly, the
Nigerian judiciary has allowed itself to be used undemocratically to neutralise
exercise of power by the legislature. The courts are happy to issue
interlocutory orders stopping the legislature from performing its constitutional
functions of investigating or sitting or even voting in one manner or another!
A former Minister of Petroleum obtained an interim order of court approving her
contention that the Nigerian legislature could not invite her for questioning
in an investigate matter relating to her Ministry. A
former head of the EFCC similarly got the nod from the court to agree with him
that the legislature could not invite him to testify in a matter that seeks to
unravel his involvement in the disappearance of recovered loots by the
The court also issued an order that the House of Representatives could not take
a vote on removing its Majority Leader and appointing a new one. The
orders were always interlocutory or interim, but that is all anyone requires to
stymie or neutralise the power of the legislature.
the courts have unfettered right to declare null and void the result of any
investigation or any proceedings or any manner of voting of result thereof,
what courts in developed democracies do not do is attempt to stop the action of
a whole arm of government, in this case the legislature, from exercising its
only justification that the Nigerian courts rely upon to neutralise legislative
power is that not doing so will, in their estimation, amount to ousting the
jurisdiction of the court and, the reasoning goes, this is contrary to the
provisions of Section 6(6) of the Constitution as amended.
mentioned above, Section 6(6)(b) of the 1999 Constitution has been invoked by
the courts to rightly nullify any attempt to oust the jurisdiction of the
courts. But the ouster clause argument is not relevant here since no one is
claiming that the courts lack jurisdiction to entertain matters relating to
exercise of powers by the legislature. The contention is that while it does so,
the courts cannot legitimately estop the legislature from commencing,
continuing or concluding the exercise of its own powers. Unarguably, the right
justification is not the ouster clause as we are sometimes led to believe. The
appropriate justification here is that courts fall back to their inherent
powers to do what they consider to be in the interest of justice. The
Constitution acknowledges the "inherent powers and sanctions of a court of
law" in Section 6(6)(a) of the 1999 Constitution. While the ouster clause is backed up in
Section 6(6)(b) of the Constitution, Section 6(6)(a) gives support for the
inherent powers of the court.
inherent powers of the court are not defined in the Constitution but the courts
themselves in Nigeria and indeed in other developed and democratic countries have
elucidated upon it beyond any doubt for many centuries. Rules of courts, being
internal codes or regulations of the court system further contain similar
elucidation. The British Normandy-era or Europe Enlightenment-era courts and judges
never extended the province of "inherent powers of sanctions of a court
" to issue interim orders stopping a parliament from commencing or
concluding its work! More importantly, I am yet to stumble on a case in the
United States of America where a court granted an interim order stopping the
Congress from exercising its powers.
seems to me that we have pushed the province of the "ouster clause"
and "inherent powers of the court" too far in Nigeria to scuttle exercise
of constitutionally guaranteed power of the legislature in a manner that has wrecked
havoc on the development of our democracy. The courts have overstretched their
use of judicial power of issuing interim orders to constantly neutralise the
exercise of power by the legislature. The inherent powers of the court in
Nigeria, as in other advanced democracies, to issue interim orders should stop
where the constitutional power of the legislature begins. The legislature has
power to summon anybody and to investigate anything
and no court, democratically speaking, should be able to stop that. Although
the court may declare such summon or investigation null and void, it should not
be able to stop it.
not aware of a Nigerian court stopping any President or Governor from carrying
out any appointment or holding a meeting or arriving at a decision or function enjoined
by the Constitution. To my own estimation, this attitude of the courts is far
more like non appreciation of the ethos of democracy and its culture than of engaging
in a conspiracy against the legislature. The hysteria for unduly invoking outer
clause or inherent powers of the court against the legislature may be explained
as being a fallout of long engagement of the military in power and the then
practice of suspending the constitution and enacting obnoxious laws and
decrees. However, times have changed, democracy is here to stay and so judicial
attitude to interpretation must also change.
much has been said for active neutralisation of legislative powers through our
courts but the executive has devised another means of scuttling legislative
power through passive neutralisation. This one is when the executive brazenly
disregards the resolutions of the
legislature. Compare with the active method of going through the judiciary,
this is the passive, do-noting method. I believe the greatest threat to the
promise of consolidating our democracy in Nigeria is the wilful disregard of
resolutions of the legislature by the executive. This completes the circle of
neutralization of legislative power. On the one hand, when the legislature is
about to exercise its legislative powers, the courts operate to stop it. On the
other hand, when the legislature urges the executive to do an action, it
neutralises legitimate power by simply ignoring the resolution or directive.
was stated above that the presidential system of government presupposes that
each arm performs its function unfettered and that each will accord the others
due respect and regard for the purpose of ensuring smooth running of
government. All these assumptions are intrinsic and are a matter of course with
the parliamentary model since some members of one arm belong and perform the
functions of the other. This seemingly intractable problem of the presidential
model in Africa does not exist with the parliamentary model because government
ministers would have participated in the deliberations and debates in
parliament leading to the adoption of the resolutions. Unless each arm performs
its functions without let or hindrance, and unless each arm accords the others
due respect and regard, delivery of governmental development policies and
programmes cannot run smoothly. The people, and not those in power, will suffer
the presidential model of government, the assumption is that the executive will
take resolutions of the legislature seriously and try to implement them or give
reasons for not being able to do so. It becomes a monumental waste of time,
energy and money for 109 senators or 365 members of the House of
Representatives to engage in heated debates on ways to move the country forward
or to manage and adopt report of an investigative committee, only for the executive
to negate and neutralise that power by doing nothing. It is not only
disrespectful, it is wasteful of taxpayers' money.
more disrespectful is the escapism of the Nigerian executive and even some
senior lawyers that resolutions of the legislature, which were always supported
by most members of the ruling party in the legislature are not laws and as such
they are not binding on it. But
the resolution on the famous Doctrine of Necessity was quickly implemented by
the executive. 
This deliberate avoidance aimed at
emasculation of the legislature or neutralising its powers explains the
dominant relationship between the executive and the legislature. Nigeria
changed its model of government to the presidential one without averting its
mind to the unwritten tradition that no one challenges or gives orders to the
ruler king. With the parliamentary system, the ruler king or Prime Minister
agrees to the order being made but it comes from an external or independent
body in the Presidential system and that does not seem palatable to the African
in developed democracies, the executive disregards a clear resolution of the
legislature to its own political detriment. A resolution that is carried means
it is more popular since it has majority votes behind it and the executive that
is sensitive to the wish of the majority will think twice to neglect or ignore
such resolution. In exceptional situations that the executive feels strongly
about the matter, and this is the case sometimes where opposition controls the
majority in the legislature, the legislative arm always reserves the right to enforce
its resolutions by pouring cold water on any subsequent request of the
executive before the legislature. The United States Congress, assisted by the
Supreme Court, now has inherent contempt power, which it can use to imprison
anybody that flouts its resolution.  It
is in this context that we should view the constitutional amendment to grant
qualified immunity against criminal prosecution to presiding officers of the
legislative houses in the country.
contrast, legislatures in emerging democracies do not feel emboldened to take
residuary actions against the executive to enforce their resolutions because their
citizens, who are likely to benefit most when the resolutions are implemented, perceive
the legislature as belligerent lots. While public opinion supports
congressional resolutions in the United States, it is largely unsupportive or
indifferent in Nigeria. Nigerians will almost always attack the legislature any
time it is perceived to confront the President or Governor in the name of
enforcing a resolution. Nigeria is in dire need of a way to shore up the
respect of the legislature by the executive leading to voluntary compliance
with legislative resolutions.
extreme circumstances to enforce its resolution, the legislature can cause a
stalemate as is usually the case in the United States where Congress shuts down
government at the end of the year by withholding its approval. Recently though,
the Nigerian Senate took an unprecedented action to enforce its own resolution
regarding filling up vacancies in the Senate.
It is to be recalled that all three senatorial elections in Rivers State
were annulled or declared inconclusive. On 27th September, 2016, the
Senate passed a resolution, S/Res/016/02/16 calling on the Independent National
Electoral Commission to immediately conclude all pending re-run elections in
the country especially in Rivers State which has no single senator representing
it at the Senate.
As usual, INEC did nothing. On the November 2nd, 2016 Senate passed
another resolution urging INEC to conduct elections into the Senatorial
districts and appoint a Minister from Kogi State to replace the last one that
died since March 2016. The elections must hold within five weeks or the Senate
will shut down for as long as the elections were not held.
7. CHALLENGES FACING THE LEGISLATURE IN
March 2003, a national workshop comprising of various committees of the
National Assembly, Speakers of State Houses of Assembly and State
Attorneys-General was held in Ilorin, Kwara State on the constitutional powers
of the legislature. One of the major recommendations contained in the
communiqué of the workshop is relevant. It states: The states “The National Assembly should be
more aggressive in presenting its position to the public to avert the current
poor public perception.”
Nigerian legislature has always suffered from poor public perception. One
cannot but agree with the views of many who have attributed this phenomenon to
the twin facts that the average Nigerian is not acquainted with the legislative
process due to incessant military coups that normally disbanded the legislature.
As a result, the legislature has not been able to fully evolve and entrench the
legislative tradition with which people are conversant. Closely connected is
the perception that the legislature votes for itself enormous salaries and
allowances to the detriment of the nation. This mischief gains currency when
the public is informed that for instance, the 2016 budget of the National
Assembly of N115 Billion Naira is simply divided and shared by the number of
federal legislators. The legislature itself has done little to disprove this
popular but incorrect portrayal of it in the public. When it comes to its
budget, the legislature needs to be more transparent and engage with the
Oko rightly identifies lack of capacity and experience as a big challenge to
the legislature. Nigeria ranks as the country with the highest number of
legislature turn-over in the world.
Every election cycle disgorges an average of two-thirds of trained and
experienced legislators to the detriment of the institution. There is also the
challenge of public expectation of being funded on almost everything by their
legislators who are perceived to have unfettered access to public funds. The expensive electoral system is
another huge challenge with no solution at sight.
At the state level, we also have the challenge of fledgling legislative houses
that are so weak they mostly qualify as another ministry under the executive.
Indeed, in one of the states in the North West, current legislators risk
drawing the ire of the Executive Governor if they choose to sponsor
private-member bills without seeking the approval of the Governor. Unless the
legislature at the state level also achieve the status of financial autonomy,
they will never begin to set themselves free from the executive branch at that
7.1 Budget Padding and Corruption in the
of the challenges facing the legislature in Nigeria, the issue of corruption
cannot be overemphasised. The flagship item about corruption currently is the
issue of budget padding. The controversy about what has become to be known as
budget padding is really not a fundamental problem. It is a manifestation of
the various challenges that were highlighted above: lack of awareness of the
legislative role and procedure as well as poor public perception of the
legislature. If we take it that to pad means to embellish, creep in, to sneak
in something, and given what one gathers from the public debate over the
subject-matter so far, budget padding presupposes that the person who pads does
not have authority to do the padding but went ahead all the same to do it and
without the permission of the original author of the document padded. The
premise of the meaning of budget padding by Nigerians is totally wrong. And as
indicated, it is wrong because of lack of awareness of the legislative process.
function of the legislature is to pass a proposed budget submitted by the
executive. This primary function of being in charge of the purse, by far,
supersedes all others. Determining how much is to be spent and on what matter
is sine qua non with the legislature. In the most simplistic form, the
democratic practice of cooperation and of check and balance is that the
executive prepares and sends a proposed budget to the legislature, and it is
what is approved by the legislature and assented to by the executive that
becomes the budget. Not
being a robotic exercise, it is assumed that a substantial amount of work would
have occurred between the time the document was proposed and when it was
authenticated, and in the process some subtractions and additions would have
taken place, if the legislature works qua legislature. To now dub such as an
apocryphal or illegal insertion is to confuse a proposed budget to a
copyrighted document that must not change. It is true that corruption can and
does creep into the process but the important issue of fighting corruption is
lost in the misplaced argument that a proposed budget is unalterable. The
legislature must do its work and cannot sacrifice its duty of budget scrutiny
on the altar of allegation of corruption.
is pervasive in Nigeria and is neither specific to the legislature nor to the
critical examination of a budget proposal.
We must device means of cleansing the entire legislative process in general,
and budget process in particular, of corrupt practices. Corruption in the legislature
may start by addressing the expensive electoral system and the urge by
legislators to recoup money spent,
as well as negating the prevalent public expectation of drawing unending cash
from their legislators.
connected to budget matters is the issue of constituency projects. Constituency
projects are those projects that are suggested by each legislator for his
constituency and agreed to by the executive branch. Unlike other items in the
budget, they are initiated by the legislator who also identifies the exact
location for its execution. But like all other items in the budget, it is the
executive branch that carry out full implementation of the projects. Constituency
projects become hazy and corruption infested when some officers in the executive
arm connive with other members in the legislature not to implement the projects
and to just channel the money to their shared private pockets. Constituency
projects in themselves are excellent intervention that takes development to the
most rural areas. It is the corruption that has crept in that we should target
for elimination and not the constituency projects themselves.
8. PROSPECTS FOR EMERGING DEMOCRACIES
is the hub of a functional democracy the world over. It symbolizes the
sovereignty of the people and embodies their destiny and aspirations. Democracy
is a process that needs to be learned and domesticated; it cannot be imported
wholesale. Democracy does not end with multiparty elections, after all Adolf
Hitler won a fair election before wreaking havoc on humanity. Although present
African countries were a creation not of homogeneity but of European quest for
resource exploitation with the attendant colonial culture of oppression, a
great number of those countries are moving towards enviable democratic culture.
With all the imperfections of their democratic experience, they have largely moved
away from the once popular military insurrection as a means of gaining
political power. This is condemnable.
shift in thinking and action of African leaderships and citizens can equally be
deployed to reinforce our democratic experience by developing democratic
paraphernalia and institutions. For this purpose, no other institution than the
legislature needs to be constantly strengthened. Luckily, in Nigeria the federal
legislature has achieved some level of independence that will be hard for any
external power or influence to reverse. The federal legislature will do this
country a great service if it decides, like its counterparts across the world,
to deploy its legislative powers to establish a formidable process to fight
corruption in the land. In addition, doing so will dispel the misconception and
negative perception surrounding its activities.
hope of deploying the legislative process to fight corruption is rekindled by
the current move by the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption
(PACAC) to warm up to the federal and state legislatures in the fight against
The federal and state legislatures, collaborating with the Committee organised
a high-powered national symposium specifically addressing how the legislature
can achieve success in the fight against corruption.
It is our hope that the executive will change its attitude and continuously
warm up to the legislature to jointly fight this war on corruption. As every
speaker at the conference at the conference acknowledged, there is no other
sustainable way to do this.
is left to be said is that when the legislature is set to get fully engaged in
the fight against corruption, it cannot but be consistent with due process and
with due regard to fundamental rights of citizens. Otherwise, if due process is
jettisoned in order to fight corruption today, it could as well be done for
other subject-matters that the proponents want to pursue in future; and it
could be any bad thing as well. That will be dangerous to democracy and good
governance. In the end, the day the Nigerian executive voluntarily implements
resolutions of the legislature legitimately arrived at, we would have been very
close as to answer the call of a developed democratic nation.
sum up the thoughts expressed above, one cannot but offer a word of practical
advice to move our democracy forward one more step. It is here recommended that
for separation of powers and its positive effects on good governance to take
root in Nigeria, the practice of neutralising powers of the legislature must
stop. But because there are more than enough Supreme Court decisions supporting,
undemocratically, neutralisation of the power of the legislature. We must devise
a way of preventing this neutralisation from continuing. And this is the only one
recommendation that one will offer at the end of this lecture.
only way is to recommend a legislation to the effect that no interim orders
from a court shall issue to prevent any legislature from exercising its
constitutional powers. To many Nigerian lawyers, this suggestion is a
sacrilege. But so was the disapproval of Nigerians to the attempt to
re-legislate chamber-based immunity that was ultimately contained in the
amended draft constitution during the 7th Legislature. But to lawyers and
democrats in developed nations around the world, this recommended legislation
to ban interim orders against the legislature that is the democratic norm.
Indeed as one is not certain that when passed, the courts would still not
strike down such law as being unconstitutional. Therefore, the full proof is to
appeal to Nigerians and insert such pro-democracy legislation in the ongoing
exercise of constitutional amendment. And that is our recommendation. Thank
 Nwabueze, Ben, 'The Concept of Constitutional Democracy' in Constitutional Democracy in Africa, Vol.
1, P.1 (2003).
 Fish M., 'Stronger Legislatures, Stronger Democracies' (2006) 20
Barkan J, Legislative Power in Emerging African Democracies (Lynne
Rienner Publishers 2009)
David O and Philip N, ‘Legislatures in democratic transition’ (2011)
15 TJLS 4
Horizontal accountability is the capacity of state institutions to
check abuse by other public agencies and branches of government or the
requirement for agencies to report sideways. Institutions such as the
parliament or the judiciary commonly provide horizontal accountability.
Iheanacho E, ‘Democracy and Good Governance in Nigeria: Challenges
and Prospects’ (2013) 72 IJALSG 67
Olusegun B, ‘Emerging Legislatures in Africa: Challenges and
Opportunities’ (2015) 29 DCS 20
 ‘Nicaragua, Fourth Time Unlucky’. THE ECONOMICS, October 29, 2016
 'DSS Detains Zamfara
Speaker, Deputy, Others Over Plot to Impeach Governor Yari' Vanguard
Newspapers, July 21, 2016.
Kotia E, ‘The Principle and Reality of Legislative Oversight in
Defence Matters in Liberal Democracies: An Empirical Case’ (2011) 71 JAPSS 59
Ilufoye O, ‘Democracy and good governance: Nigeria’s dilemma’ (2010)
208 AJPSIR 206
 Alfred S and Skach C, ‘Constitutional Frameworks and Democratic
Consolidation’ (1993) 22 WP 3
Nijzink L, Mozaffar S and Azevedo E, ‘Can Parliaments Enhance the
Quality of Democracy on the Continent? An Analysis of the Institutional
Capacity and Public Perceptions’ (2006) 27 CSSR 8
Johnson K and Robert N, ‘A Concept Paper on Legislatures and Good
Governance’ (Paper prepared for UNDP 1999) <http://mirror.undp.org/magnet/Docs/parliaments/Concept%20Paper%20Revised%20MAGNET.HTM>
accessed 18 October 2016
Cheema G, Building Democratic Institutions: Governance Reform in Developing
Countries, Connecticut, (Kumarian Press 2005).
 Ss. 48-49 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999
 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999) Part II
Anyebe P, ‘Rules and Procedures Governing Legislative Process in Nigeria’
(2016) 83 JLPG 73
Nwabueze, Ben, 'Nature and Role of Legislature in Modern Government
and the Struggle between Rival or Competing Interests for the Control of
Legislative Power' . op. cit. 181.
 Verney, D., (ed.) Parliamentary Government and Presidential
Government (Oxford University Press, 1992)
 Nwabueze, Ben, 'Separation of Powers under the Constitution: its
Merits and Demerits' op. cit P.241.
 Nwabueze, Ben, 'Consequences Flowing from the Separation of Powers'
op. cit P.258.
 For elaborate account and analysis of devastating altercations
between the NPN-dominated Kaduna State House of Assembly and PRP Governor Musa,
See Nwabueze op. cit.
 Nwabueze, Ben, op. cit. 'Nature and Extent of Executive Power' P
 Oko, Okechukwu, 'Legislators in Changing and Challenging Times: An
Analysis of the Nigerian National Assembly',
P. 146 (2014).
 'Senate Rejects $29.96 Billion Loan Request, Presidency Reacts”,
Tribune Newspapers, 2nd November, 2016
 The Senate Votes and Proceedings
 “Senate Rejects $29.96 Billion Loan Request, Presidency Reacts”,
Tribune Newspapers, 2nd November, 2016
 Ahmad, A., 'Saraki V. FRN: A digest of the Court of Appeal's Gap
Theory', The Lawyer, Thisday Newspapers 10 November, 2016
 Faleke V. INEC and Others SC
 The Senate. Votes and Proceedings on Amendment of INEC Bill.
 Saraki V. F.R.N. 3 N.W.L.R. (Part 1500) P. 531 (2016).
 Those who disagree with the legislative amendment on the basis of
the on-going trial of the Senate President by the Code of Conduct Tribunal
bring up the issue of timing of the amendment. This point does not hold water
because the amendment cannot have effect on the on-going case. Otherwise,
similar mischievous argument can be made where there is a dispute between the
legislature and the judiciary and to argue that the judiciary cannot take on
the adjudication of the matter.
 Section 3 Legislative Houses (Powers and Privileges) Act, Cap L12,
 " Section 4 of the Principal Act is altered by inserting
immediately after subsection '(7)' a new subsection '(7A)'. (7A) In the course of exercising the
foregoing legislative powers, no civil or criminal proceedings shall be
instituted against a member of a Legislative House in respect of words spoken
or written before the House or a Committee thereof". See the 8th Senate,
Constitution Fourth Alteration Bill , June 2016.
 "Existing law" means laws that are in force before the
Constitution came into effect in 1999. See S.315(4)(b) of the Constitution of
the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended (1999).
 Section 3 Legislative Houses (Powers and Privileges) Act, Cap L12,
Nwabueze, Ben, Executive Usurpation of Legislative or Judicial
Power' op. cit P.308.
 'National Assembly Shut after Police Futile Bid to Stop Tambuwal'
The News Newspaper, 20th November, 2014. The Speaker had changed his political
party from that of the executive branch and was set on the day the Assembly was
locked to defeat a resolution extending state of emergency in the North Eastern
part of the country.
Detains Zamfara Speaker, Deputy, Others Over Plot to Impeach Governor Yari'
Vanguard Newspapers, July 21, 2016.
 'Kogi Speaker, Deputy Impeached
for Incompetence', Daily Trust Newspaper 10 December, 2015
 Impeachment: Court reinstates Kogi Speaker, others. Vanguard
Newspaper, May 19, 2016.
 Kogi speaker, deputy
impeached for incompetence
 Allison-Madueke V. The Senate and Others FHC/ABJ/2015
 Ibrahim Lamorde V. The Senate, and the Senate Committee on Ethics,
Privileges and Public Petitions. FHC/ABJ/CS/934/2015.
 Mulikat Adeola V. House of Representatives and others.
 S. 88 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria
 'Why NASS Resolutions are not Binding on President -- SANs'. The
Vanguard Newspapers October 23, 2012.
 'Constitution Review: Doctrine of Necessity to the Rescue' Vanguard
Newspapers July 17, 2013..
 The reasoning is that if Congress did not possess this power, it
would be “exposed to every indignity and interruption that rudeness, caprice or
even conspiracy may mediate against it.” Anderson
v. Dunn 19 US 204 (1821). The authority of the Congress on investigative
matters is so extensive that the attorney-client privilege is not applicable.
 The Senate Votes and Proceedings, No. 31, Senate of the Federal
Republic of Nigeria, P. 730, Wednesday 2nd
 James Faleke V. INEC and others.
S.C. 648/2016. Judgment delivered 20th September, 2016. (Not yet
 Communiqué Issued at A Two-Day Training Workshop on Constitutional
Powers of the Legislature for National Assembly Committees on Justice Judiciary
and Human Rights, Speakers and Attorneys-General of States of the Federation,
Ilorin, Kwara State 22-23 March 2013.
 Oko, Okechukwu, Op cit. 145.
Olorunmola A, ‘Cost of politics in Nigeria: Background Paper’ (2016)
15 WFD 11
 S.63 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999).
Mudasiru S, ‘The Legislature and the Political Economy of Corruption
in Nigeria’ (2005) 19 AMN 19
Yusuf H, ‘Rule of Law and Politics of Anti-Corruption Campaigns in a
Post-Authoritarian State: The Case of Nigeria’ (2011) 83 KLJ 57
Daima A., ‘Challenges for Emerging African Democracies’ (2007) 64 PR
 See "The Legislature and the Fight Against Corruption in
Nigeria", a conference organised for the National Assembly, the Presidency
and the private sector and declared open by the Vice President with the Senate
President in attendance, held in Abuja 18-19 October, 2016.
 Ahmad, A., 'Anti-Corruption Reforms in Nigeria -- The Role of State
and Local Government' ibid.