Majority states pass ‘Not Too Young To Run’ bill

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The bill seeking to amend sections of the 1999 Constitution to reduce the age limits for eligibility for elective offices in Nigeria, known as the Not Too Young To Run bill, has secured the endorsement of 24 states.

Both chambers of the National Assembly passed the amendment bill in July last year, leaving the states’ Houses of Assembly to continue the legislative process.

However, the principle guiding the process of constitutional amendments would require the president to append his signature to finally enshrine it into law.

The age reduction bill is expected to enhance the chances of young Nigerians in participating in politics and to seek for elective positions as candidates.

The bill met the required two thirds majority of all the 36 states (24 states) on Thursday when Plateau and Anambra states passed the amendment.

Earlier, Ondo, Adamawa, Kwara, Benue, Nasarawa, Borno, Delta, Enugu, Ekiti, Katsina, Yobe, Gombe, Kebbi, Akwa Ibom, Enugu, Kaduna, Kogi, Ogun, Ondo, Niger, Bauchi, Jigawa and Ebonyi states had supported the bill.

The bill is at present pending at the legislative houses of Kano, Sokoto, Zamfara, Rivers, Bayelsa, Imo, Oyo, Osun, Edo, Cross River and Lagos States.

The bill was rejected by the Taraba House of Assembly.

Section 131(b) requires that a person is qualified to be president if he has attained the age of 40 years. Similarly, Section 65(a&b) stipulates the ages for the Senate and the House of Representatives as 35 and 30 years respectively.

 

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