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The Nigerian Vice-President: Powers and Privileges in Comparative Perspective

23 Pages Posted: 23 Jan 2009  

Ajepe Taiwo Shehu

University of Ilorin

Date Written: January 22, 2009


This paper looks at the position of the Nigerian vice-president under the 1999 Constitution. The powers and responsibilities allocated to the office are examined from comparative perspective. The paper argues that the office is not accorded the right recognition. It is further argued that the office is at the mercy of the President who may decide to render the office impotent. Nothing in the Constitution compells the President to allocate to his deputy any significany executive power. So, It is what the President wants of the deputy that becomes of him in the executive scheme. Unfortunately, the same Constitution that expects the deputy to assume executive responsibilties in the absence of the President or when his office becomes vacant for whatever reason has failed to realise the need for carring along the deputy in the governance. It may however be argued that the makers of the Constitution expected the President to delegate some executive powers to his Vice. They have failed to consider a situation of acrimony between the two as we have witnessed in Nigeria between President Olsegun Obasanjo and his Vice, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar. The paper however concludes that unless the executive powers are shared between the President and the Deputy the office would attract only inexperienced politicians who would want to use the office to gain political popularity.

Suggested Citation

Shehu, Ajepe Taiwo, The Nigerian Vice-President: Powers and Privileges in Comparative Perspective (January 22, 2009). Available at SSRN: or

Ajepe Taiwo Shehu (Contact Author)

University of Ilorin ( email )

Faculty of Law
Ilorin, Kwara State 0834
08034810069 (Phone)

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