The second reading of a Bill by the House of Representatives seeking to reduce the age qualifications for interested candidates to contest for the positions of President, governor and senator in the country to 30 years, passed second reading yesterday June 8th.
The bill also seeks to reduce the age qualifications to contest for the House of Representatives and State Houses of Assembly to 25 years.
The bill which is being sponsored by Tony Chinedu Nwulu representing Oshodi-Isolo 11 Federal Constituency of Lagos State, seeks to alter section 65, 106, 131 and 177 of the 1999 constitution which had pegged the age qualification of candidates for the office of President at 40 years and above, office of governors and senate, 35 years and above and House of Representatives and state Houses of Assembly members to 25 years and above.
Speaking on the bill, Nwulu said “Countries like the United Kingdom parliament decided in 2006 to lower their age of candidacy from 21 to 18, which had existed since the Parliamentary Elections Act 1695. An age candidacy of 25 would encourage greater youth participation in politics.” The bill is also seeking to permit independent candidacy during any election.