Dynamics of Change in Legislators' Quality and Effectiveness in Nigeria's 4th To 6th National Assembly

Kolapo, Abayomi Quadri ; Luqman, Saka (2021-07)


Notwithstanding the centrality of the parliament to governance, numerous studies have come to the conclusion that the legislative institution in most African democracies is weak. A report by the UN Economic Commission for Africa found that "many African legislators lack the educational qualification, information, freedom and independence to perform their constitutionally mandated functions effectively and efficiently. On this premise, this paper examines the effectiveness of the Nigerian National Parliament based on three major functional responsibilities: Oversight Power, Representation and Law Making. The paper adopts the qualitative and quantitative methods for data collection and analysis. The biographies of legislators in the National Assembly were examined. This allows the researchers to know the educational background, experience and expertise of the legislators. It also examines various Bills and Acts that emanated from the National Assembly and the effectiveness of such Bills and Acts in the drive towards national development, 4th to 6th Assembly. The paper finds that the National Assembly rises above board in legislative qualities and outputs (education and bills enacted) but was adversely affected by the corrupt activities that have embroiled its leadership over the years. The paper argues that the numerous scandals that have rocked the leaderships of the National Assembly over the years had undermined the effectiveness of the legislative institution in Nigeria.