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Governors Must See Legislature As Partners, Not Appendages – Obasa

The Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, alongside other lawmakers, has called on governors in Nigeria to avoid seeing state legislatures as appendages of the executive and instead treat lawmakers as partners in the progress and development of states.

Naija News reports that the House made the resolutions in commemoration of the 2024 edition of the International Day of Parliamentarism, celebrated on June 30.

In a statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Eromosele Ebhomele, the state lawmakers who described the legislature as the bedrock of democracy asserted there is a need to criminalise any action that violates the independence of the parliament.

Obasa also urged the state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to recognise past speakers of the Lagos Assembly for their contributions to the state’s growth and development.

According to the Speaker, without the parliament, there is no democracy, highlighting the institution’s crucial role in governance through lawmaking, motions and resolutions.

He described the International Day of Parliamentarism as a day to “do more to draw the attention of Nigerians to the importance of the legislature.”

While congratulating parliamentarians across the country for their contributions toward the nation’s development, Obasa said: “It is also important to note that a government has three arms, and if one is missing, there is no government.

“Since 1979 when this House was established under Alhaji Lateef Jakande, none of the past speakers have been celebrated.

“We should celebrate those who have represented us well and convey to the National Assembly the need to allow Houses of Assembly to practise what the constitution says about the parliament effectively and to provide the necessary support.

“The governors should also give the political will to the parliament to enable it to perform its duties as stated in the constitution.” 

Also speaking, the lawmaker representing Eti-Osa constituency 2, Gbolahan Yishawu, said the role of a parliament cannot be overemphasized, saying, “Democracy is all about the parliament. It is a bridge between the people and government, but we are sometimes underappreciated as representatives of the people. There is no gap between the parliament and the people. There is no type of government that can exist without parliament.” 

Hon. Desmond Elliot, representing Surulere, noted that nothing occurs in a state without the parliament’s input, while Hon. Sa’ad Olumoh described parliamentarians as stabilisers of the polity who deserve to be celebrated.

Hon. Adedamola Richard Kasunmu urged the House to consider being a part of the Inter-Parliamentary Union.

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