The motion sponsor noted that the non-compilation of several federal statutes leads to a dearth of knowledge of many existing laws on the part of citizens.
The Senate has mandated its Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters to immediately interface with the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation to initiate the process of revising the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.
The directive follows the adoption of a motion on the “Urgent need to commence revision of the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria which has remained unrevised for almost two decades,” sponsored by Senator Kaka Shehu (APC, Borno Central).
In his lead debate, Shehu said the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (LFN) was an alphabetical compilation of laws operative in Nigeria which are updated on a regular basis.
Shehu noted that the Attorney General of the Federation was in charge of compiling the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, and that the National Assembly had to approve an act before it could begin.
He said, “All statutes in the federation as of December 31, 2002, were included in the last and current compilation of the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, which was completed in 2004.
“The statutes in the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 were enacted in different years before and after Nigeria’s independence even though they are all cited as “LFN 2004”, which consists of 16 volumes, with each volume being made up of several statutes organised in an alphanumeric order.
There was an attempt to revise the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria in 2010 but this effort had no legal framework of the National Assembly approving it.”
Shehu expressed concern that the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 have not been updated in the past 19 years, implying that the various laws passed in Nigeria between January 1, 2003, and the present are still not included in the compilation.
He further observed that the persistent lack of revision to the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 has resulted in many statutes being omitted from the compilation as well as the retention of numerous repealed statutes, which has caused confusion and other unfavourable effects.
“The non-compilation of the several federal statutes leads to dearth of knowledge of many existing laws on the part of Nigerians, especially students, lecturers, researchers, lawyers, legislators, and judges among others.
The revision of the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 is long overdue and as such will be in the interest of democratic governance in Nigeria to commence the revision process without further delay.” he said.