Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), constitutional lawyer and human rights activist on Wednesday said the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria empowers the National Assembly to summon President Muhammadu Buhari to address them over the state of the nation.
The Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), has said the National Assembly lacks the power to invite President Muhammadu Buhari to speak on security matters, arguing that the right of the President to engage the National Assembly and appear before it is “inherently discretionary in the President and not at the behest of the National Assembly.”
However, speaking in a chat with Daily Independent, Ozekhome said the constitution in Section 88 and 89 empowers the National Assembly to compel the President as a public officer to appear before it.
“It depends on the angle you are looking at it. if it is from the angle of presenting a national budget, the constitution requires the President to lay the budget directly before the National Assembly, which will be sitting as a joint House presided over by the Senate President who is the chairman of the National Assembly. In such a case, the President must come directly and present his budget”.