by Lekan Olanrewaju
Justice Alfa Belgore’s Committee on Constitution Amendments has, in it’s report, rejected the proposed single seven year presidency tenure. The controversial proposal led to various accusations on Thursday, with nascent Coalition of Northern Leaders, Academics, Professionals and Businessmen, warningthe Belgore Committee against any plot to elongate President Goodluck Jonathan’s tenure, and describing the proposal as a ‘’sinister third term agenda’’.
The report of the panel may be submitted to President Jonathan by the end of this month, according to indications yesterday.
According to The Nation, a source confirmed that the Presidency actually proposed a single tenure of seven years, which the panel rejected outright.
”We had the proposal before us and we extensively debated the merits and demerits of the seven-year tenure. At the end of the day, we agreed that the nation should continue to run a four-year tenure system.
“There is nothing like Third Term Agenda because the President has not finished his first term in office.
“Having rejected the proposal, we cannot understand where this noise from the Coalition of Northern Leaders is coming from just to malign the hard-earned integrity of members of the committee.
“We are still writing the report. It is not true that we are trying to elongate the tenure of the President. We have retained the four-year system.
“We believe it is one of us that must be feeding northern leaders wrongly on the activities of the Belgore Committee. This member of the Belgore Committee has a close affinity with the coalition.
“The only thing I can tell you is that we debated the seven-year tenure proposal thoroughly before we opted for the present tenure system.’’
Responding to a question, the source said: “I don’t know what the North wants. I think they are making all these allegations to intimidate the South.
“We are one country, and it is to our advantage to remain as one country. What the committee is after is that we should let the best person rule this country.
We hear you.