Association of 
Nigerian Scholars 
for Dialogue


Submitted by
Association of Nigerian Scholars for Dialogue
International Conference Centre
Area 10, Abuja, Nigeria.

The Association of Nigerian Scholars for Dialogue is concerned about Section 29 (i) of the draft Constitution which states as follows: "A citizen of Nigeria shall not forfeit his Nigerian citizenship if, within 12 months of the coming into force of the provision of this Chapter or his attaining the age of 21 years (whichever is the later) he renounces the citizenship of any other country which he may possess."

We challenge this clause for several reasons. First, it is an example of the overuse of the Constitution. This is a matter that can be handled by a legislative assembly. The issue of dual citizenship is a dynamic one that requires to be reviewed from time to time by a country's legislators. This clause would forbid any reviews for the sake of reciprocal relationships with other nations' immigration policies.

Second, it is only six years ago that the Federal Military Government enacted a decree permitting dual citizenship. Should governments be changing their minds on matters of such international import as dual citizenship so rapidly? It does not reflect well on Nigeria's integrity to appear to be so fickle about such weighty matters.

Third, Nigeria will lose millions of its citizens and their children who currently enjoy dual citizenship as a result of a policy only recently enacted by the Federal Military Government. The economic impact of such a change in policy may also be considerable.

The Association of Nigerian Scholars for Dialogue strongly urges the CDCC to recommend that this clause should be expunged from the draft Constitution. Many Nigerians in North America are concerned about this matter. We offer you the thoughts of Dr. Nowa Omoigui, one of our members, who has given this issue close considerations, on the next page.

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