Civil Rule and Separation of Powers
The Nigeria Constitution of 1999, provided for a presidential system of government. The constitution also provided for a clear division of the three powers or branches of government as follows:
Section 4: The Legislature with Legislative powers
Section 5: The Executive with executive powers
Section 6: The Judiciary with judicial powers
During Civil rule, the Constitution is the Supreme Law of the land and the rule of law is the basis of government actions. Any law or action that contravenes the provisions of the constitution is void to the extent of such inconsistency.
the National Assembly.
Also In the Attorney General of the Federation V Attorney General
of Abia state, the Supreme court declared unconstitutional and contrary to the provisions of section 162 of the 1999 constitution the Act of the Federal Government in charging certain funds, like that of the judiciary, settlement of external federal debt joint venture contracts and the Nigeria National
Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) priority projects, special allocation to the Federal Capital Territory in the federation Account out of which all the various levels of government are to take a share.
We draw our conclusion from the observation made by the Constitution Drafting Committee of the 1979 constitution which said: Strict compartmentalized separation is not possible under
modern systems of government as modern governments should be a co-operative co-co-coordinated effort and not atug of war between the principal organs of government. Separation of executive and legislative function is necessary and desirable if limited government and individual liberty are to be secured, but certainly not a rigid separationAnd this tallies with the views of Abiola Ojo, that
“a complete separation of powers is neither practicable nor desirable for effective government. What the doctrine can be taken to mean is the prevention of tyranny by the conferment of too much power on anyone person or body and the check of one power by another”.
In this unit you should be able to explain the concept separation of powers and its application under:
Democratic dispensation Military dispensation In a Parliamentary System of Government.