APPRAISAL OF IMPEACHMENT PROCESS UNDER THE 1999 CONSTITUTION OF NIGERIA

ABSTRACT
This project report centres on Appraisal of impeachment process under the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria. It x-rays basically the Legislatures excessive and negative use of impeachment process provided in the 1999 Constitution against the Executive arm of government, particularly, State Governors and their Deputies. This anomaly forms the foundation upon which the statement of the research problem of this work is anchored.

This research highlights in details the procedure for impeachment, the historical development of impeachment, the meaning of gross misconduct which is the main ground for carrying out impeachment proceedings. The roles of courts and other institutions are also discussed.

The research reveals through case laws how our legislators abused the impeachment process in order to achieve their selfish interests while relying on the erroneous impression that their actions cannot be questioned in court. The courts however rose to the occasion and checkmated their excesses leading to upturning almost all the cases filed by the impeached persons. The courts defined the true import and intent of Sections 143(10) and 188(10) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria which oust the jurisdiction of court from entertaining cases emanating from impeachment proceedings.

In this appraisal the researcher relies on doctrinal and empirical research methods. To this extent, questionnaires and oral interviews were employed, analysed and arrived at mind-blowing results.

In conclusion, it is revealed among other things that the impeachment process has done more harm than good in the political development of Nigeria and that the Constitution requires an amendment to correct the anomalies inherent therein. It is recommended inter alia that constitutional courts should be established to try impeachment cases with dispatch.

TABLE CONTENTS
Title page
Table of contents
Table of Cases
List of Statutes
Abstract

CHAPTER ONE
1.0  GENERAL INTRODUCTION
1.1  Background of the Study
1.2  Statement of Research problem
1.3  Justification of the Research
1.4  Objectives
1.5  Scope of the Research
1.6  Methodology
1.7  Literature Review
1.8  Organisational Structure

CHAPTER TWO
2.0  HISTORICAL DEVELOPMENT AND CONCEPTUAL CLASSIFICATION OF SOME KEY TERMS
2.1       Introduction
2.2       Historical Development of Impeachment Process
2.3       Meaning of Impeachment
2.4       Meaning of Gross Misconduct
2.5       Conclusion

CHAPTER THREE
3.0  GROUNDS AND PROCEDURE FOR IMPEACHMENT
3.1       Introduction
3.2       Constitutional Ground
3.3       Political Ground
3.4       Procedure for Impeachment
3.4.1  Notice of Impeachment
3.4.2  Service of Impeachment notice
3.4.3  Quorum requirement
3.4.4  Panel of seven members
3.4.5  Venue
3.4.6  Conclusion

CHAPTER FOUR
4.0  DATA ANALYSIS
4.1       Introduction
4.2       Methodology of Data Analysis
4.3       Analysis of Data
4.4       Result of Data Analaysis
4.5       Conclusion

CHAPTER FIVE
5.0  THE ROLE OF COURT AND OTHER INSTITUTIONS IN IMPEACHMENT PROCESS
5.1       Introduction
5.2       The Role of Courts
5.3       The Role of Security Agencies
5.4       The Role of Media
5.5       The Role of Electorate
5.6       Conclusion

CHAPTER SIX
6.0  SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION
6.1       Summary
6.2       Findings
6.3       Recommendations
BIBLIOGRAPHY
APPENDIX 

CHAPTER ONE
GENERAL INTRODUCTION 1.1 Background of the Study
The gale of impeachments and threats of impeachment of political office holders in Nigeria today are not only worrisome and alarming, but pose a great danger to the survival of our nascent democracy which we all longed and laboured for after many years of military hegemony.

The 4th Republic (the focus of this research) which started from 29th May 1999 to present day has recorded so many impeachments of political office holders ranging from speakers of Houses of Assembly and their Deputies Governors and their Deputies as well as Senate Presidents. At a point, members of the National Assembly threatened to impeach former President Olusegun Obasanjo as well as Goodluck Jonathan.

The impeachment of Murtala Nyako of Adamawa State and the botched attempt to impeach the Governor of Nasarawa State, Al-Makura, are factors that motivated, inspired and provoked the researcher to embark on this research. There is no doubt that this research will help to enrich the existing jurisprudence on the law and practice of impeachment process under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended)


1.2        Statement of research problem
The gale of impeachments in Nigeria has done more harm than good Politicians have thrown caution to the wind in their efforts to fulfil their political goals and ambitions without following due process laid down in the Constitution. It is on record that many impeachments took place outside the hallowed chambers of parliament like in the hotel or even the residence of one of the conspirators1.

Most times, the quorum will not be formed and yet the honourable members will go ahead with the impeachment proceedings. We have seen instances where a willing member will be appointed as Speaker pro tempore to carry out the duties of a substantive Speaker who is not willing to join the conspiration to impeach a Governor2.

All these amount to breaches of the Constitution which the politicians swore to protect. Where the Constitution is breached with impunity, the consequences are jungle justice, anarchy and chaos which are evil winds that blow nobody any good. Those anomalies are some of the reasons behind Military intervention in our politics. We are witnesses to the wanton destruction of lives and properties in Nasarawa State when the people rose up  against  the  legislators  who  were  bent  on  impeaching  Governor  Al-Makura of Nasarawa State by hook or crook.

1.3 Justification of the Research

There is no doubt that this research is worth embarking upon. It will be of

immense      help     to     students      of    Political       Science,      Political       Scientists,

Politicians, Law Students, Lawyers, Judges, Legislators, Legal Academics,

Teachers of Political Science and the general public. This research will

surely help to enrich our jurisprudence especially in the area of impeachment

proceedings.       Nigerians,       particularly       politicians       will     benefit     from     this

research which aims to x-ray the procedure for impeachment proceedings as

well as the dos and don‟ts of impeachment process, thereby stabilizing the

political system.

1.4     Objectives
The main objective of this research is to examine the behaviours of Politicians, especially the legislators who are in the habit of breaching the Constitution3 unashamedly for their selfish political interests and personal aggrandizement, and proffer solutions.

In other words, the aim of this project is to appraise and expose the abuse of impeachment process by politicians who are supposed to be custodians of the Constitution.

The main objective of this project is therefore to sensitize Nigerians on the anomalies being perpetrated by our politicians, particularly our Legislatures, in the area of impeachment of political office holders, and to acquaint them of their right to curtail these anomalies in appropriate situations through peaceful protests and constitutional power of recall against the legislators.

Although the Supreme Court in the case of Inakoju v. Adeleke and Others4 has cleared the hurdle on the issue of jurisdiction of courts to entertain issues relating to impeachment of political office holders holding that courts have jurisdiction to inquire whether the procedure for impeachment was religiously followed, there still remains the issue of the meaning of gross misconduct which is still being abused with impunity as our case laws have

1.5      Scope of the Research
As the title implies this research covers impeachment proceedings in Nigeria between 29th May 1999 to the present day, particularly as they relate to the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) in other words, this project focuses basically on impeachment proceedings in Nigeria between 29th May 1999 to the present day.

1.6      Methodology
In this research I used and relied on the following research methods. Empirical Research: This involved the collection of facts and data through interviews and questionnaires from target groups. The facts and data were later analysed and experimented upon from which results were patiently obtained. To this effect interviews were conducted and questionnaires administered on respondents from whom facts and data were collected. Our respondents include Politicians, Lawyers, Journalist, Students and the electorate from target areas. This was followed with analysis of the data in our Law chambers as well as libraries in order to obtain the desired result. Doctrinal Research Methodology was also employed extensively in carrying out this research. This involved the use of text books, Journals, Judicial decisions particularly the decisions of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal. The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) is also relied upon extensively.

1.7 Literature Review
It is apparent that there is a dearth of literatures in this area of our jurisprudence. This opinion is hinged on the fact that there is hardly any book that is fully written on impeachment process apart from some articles that are fully devoted to the subject. Despite the shortcoming, the works of eight scholars are hereby reviewed.

Impeachment: This is a sub topic in the book what is constitutional Law6. Dalhatu introduced the topic and traced the origin of impeachment process to England from where the United States adopted same. He then discussed impeachment procedure under the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria. He discussed legislative reverse on impeachment proceedings and cited examples of United State and British Constitutions on one hand and the Nigerian Constitution on the other hand. The learned author concluded the discussion with Judicial Intervention in The Impeachment Proceedings. He cited the popular case of Abdulkadir Balarabe Musa v. Auta Hamza and Others7 wherein the High Court declined jurisdiction by holding inter alia as follows: “My jurisdiction has been taken away by the combined effect of
section 170(10), my hands are tied by it as I hold that the exercise in question was purely a legislative constitutional affair quite outside the jurisdiction of this honourable court.”

The book, What Is Constitutional Law? (which contains the topic impeachment) was published in 2008. It however and surprisingly failed to examine the earlier Supreme Court decision in Inakoju and Others v. Adeleke and Others8 which gave the courts the jurisdiction to inquire whether the impeachment process was duly carried out as provided by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) it should be noted that Balarebe Musa case was decided pursuant to section 170(10) of the 1979 Constitution of Nigeria which is in pari materia with section 188(10) of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended). There is therefore a lacuna that needs to be filled and which this research has taken care of.....

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Item Type: Project Material  |  Attribute: 135 pages  |  Chapters: 1-6
Format: MS Word  |  Price: N3,000  |  Delivery: Within 30Mins.
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