Senate of Nigeria

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8th National Assembly
Coat of arms or logo
Bukola Saraki, PDP
since June 9, 2015
Ike Ekweremadu, PDP
since June 9, 2015
Political groups
Length of term
4 years
Multi-member plurality system
Last election
29 March 2015
Meeting place
Coat of arms of Nigeria.svg
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The Senate is the upper house of the Nigeria's bicameral legislature, the National Assembly of Nigeria. The National Assembly (popularly referred to as NASS) is the nation's highest legislature, whose power to make laws is summarized in chapter one, section four of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution. It consists of 109 senators: the 36 states are each divided in 3 senatorial districts each electing one senator; the Federal Capital Territory elects only one senator. [1] [2]

The President of the Senate is the presiding officer of the Senate, whose chief function is to guide and regulate the proceedings in the Senate. The Senate President is third in the Nigerian presidential line of succession. He is assisted by the Deputy President of the Senate. The current Senate President is Sen. Bukola Saraki and the current Deputy Senate President is Ike Ekweremadu both of the People's Democratic Party. [3] The Senate President and his Deputy are also assisted by principal officers including the Majority Leader, Deputy Majority Leader, Minority Leader, Deputy Minority Leader, Chief Whip, Deputy Chief Whip, Minority Whip, and Deputy Minority Whip. In addition, there are 63 Standing Committees in the Senate chaired by Committee Chairmen. [4]

The lower house is the House of Representatives.

Nigerian State Delegations[edit]


Functions of the Senate[edit]


Bills may be introduced in any chamber of the National Assembly. However, the Nigerian constitution provides that money bills (Revenue and Appropriation bills) must originate in the House of Representatives, although the approval of both the Senate and the House of Representatives is required for any bill, including money bills, to become law. [6]

Checks and Balances[edit]

The constitution provides several unique functions for the Senate that form its ability to "check and balance" other elements of the Federal Government of Nigeria. [7] [8] These include the requirement that the Senate may advise and must consent to some of the President's government appointments; also the Senate must consent to all treaties with foreign governments and it tries all impeachments.

Majority and minority parties[edit]

The "Majority party" is the party that either has a majority of seats or can form a coalition or caucus with a majority of seats; if two or more parties are tied the Senate President's affiliation determines which party becomes the majority party. The second largest party is the Minority party.


Senators are to serve a term of four years until a General election. Senators have unlimited tenure[9] and can remain in the chamber for as long as they are re-elected in general elections.

Defection of some members in 2018[edit]

A group of 15 senators of Nigeria’s ruling party defected to the main opposition group underscoring rising political tensions thereby making the All Progressive Congress lose her majority stake, although Senate President Bukola Saraki was not among initially, but he finally decamped to the people’s democratic party on Tuesday 31st July 2018. [10] [11] In August 2018, Senator Akpabio resigned as the Senate Minority Leader while joining the long list of Legislative defectors by joining the ruling APC. [12]


  1. ^ Federal Republic of Nigeria, National Assembly. "Administration". Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  2. ^ Federal Republic of Nigeria, National Assembly. "History And Roles". Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  3. ^ Federal Republic of Nigeria, National Assembly. "Principal Officers of The Senate". Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  4. ^ Federal Republic of Nigeria, National Assembly. "Find a Committee". Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  5. ^
  6. ^ Federal Republic of Nigeria, National Assembly. "The Legislative Process". Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  7. ^ Federal Republic of Nigeria, National Assembly. "Senate Constitutional Role". Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  8. ^ Federal Republic of Nigeria, National Assembly. "Senate Constitutional Role". Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  9. ^ "Pardoned for Senate". 2015-08-07. Retrieved 2017-03-16.
  10. ^ David Malingha Doya and Paul Wallace. "Nigeria Ruling APC Party Loses Senate Majority on Defections". Retrieved 24 July 2018.
  11. ^ Chudi, Felix. "Senate hurriedly adjourns till September 25 as PDP becomes majority party". Retrieved 24 July 2018.
  12. ^ Vanguard, News. "Akpabio drops Senate Minority leader post". Retrieved 7 August 2018.

External links[edit]