Electoral Bill: Buhari, AGF, others in crucial talks

President Muhammadu Buhari is a fix on signing or not to sign rre – amended 2010 Electoral Act ( Amendment ) Bill 2022 .

Senior Special Assistant on National Assembly Matters ( Senate ) , Senator Babajide Omoworare made this known in Abuja Thursday at a Policy Dialogue programme , organised by National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies ( NILDS) .

Omoworare explained that President Buhari , is receiving consultations from the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation , Abubakar Malami on how to handle the bill.

Omoworare said, ” A very crucial consultation is going on between Mr President , the Attorney General and other critical stakeholders on content of the bill for the required assent .

” If not for this programme , I suppose to be at the very important meeting , believed to be the major determinant for the fate of the bill.”

He however assured Nigerians that the bill will most likely be assented to by the President since issues earlier raised by him in the 2021 edition , were elaborately addressed by both chambers of the National Assembly last month

” Personally , I think in few days time , Mr President will do the needful since the most contentious aspect of the bill , had been addressed in the reworked one transmitted to him on Monday , January 31, 2022.

” Time as it is , is of essence but I believe that Mr President will do the needful “, he said .

The Director – General of NILDS, Professor Abubakar Sulaiman in his remarks said at the event said the Dialogue was convened in gaining insights from stakeholders into the issues likely to shape the conduct of political parties , political gladiators ,contestants and other issues .

Virtually all the discussants at the policy dialogue from the former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission , Professor Attahiru Jega , Country Representative of Westminster Foundation for Democracy , Adebowale Olorunmola and the Chairman , House of Representatives Committee on Media , Hon Benjamin Kalu , appealed to President Buhari to assent the bill without further delay .

Jega in particular said no law or legislation is perfect but what is available now is good and manageable for the coming elections .

But the representative of INEC at the discourse , Professor Bolade Eyinla said to avoid the problem of working on electoral laws at the tail end of conducting elections , INEC should be allowed to drive the process as being done in Ghana .

” The situation at hand now is that roughly a year to general election , the anticipated laws are not yet approved , meaning that the extant one will be used aside the fact that the process has not enable INEC to come up with clear cut guidelines for conduct of the elections ” , he lamented .

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