Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, has criticised coalition of civil society organisations planning to stage a protest against the presidency for delaying assent to the Electoral Act Amendment Bill.
Adesina took to a statement on Monday to explain that the president has until March 1, to sign it.
He also said the need for the executive arm of government to do due diligence on the bill was part of the reasons for the seeming delays.
He, however, chided the CSOs, saying they were cashing in on the bill to play cheap politics and instigate social unrest where none should ordinarily exist. He said, “Some interest groups are cashing in on what they consider a delay in the signing of the Electoral Bill into law by the president to foment civil disorder and muddy the waters.
“One can just pity their ignorance of constitutional requirements, as the president has a window of 30 days within which to sign the bill, or decline assent, after it had been transmitted to him by the National Assembly.
“It is on record that the amended bill was sent to the presidency on January 31, 2022, which means that the executive could do due diligence on it till March 1, as prescribed by the constitution.
“A proposed legislation that has to do with the electoral fortunes of the country needs to be thoroughly scrutinised, and be made as near-perfect as possible.
“Those playing cheap politics with it are, therefore, encouraged to hold their peace, knowing that the right thing will be done within the lawful time”.
Adesina’s reaction may have come on the heels of a proposed protest by a coalition of civil society organisations billed for Tuesday in Abuja from the Unity Fountain.