Electoral Act: Presidential veto suffers setback

Gloria Essien, Abuja

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The move by the House of Representatives to veto President Muhammadu Buhari and pass the Electoral Act has suffered a setback.

This followed the stepping down of a motion on the need to invoke section 58(5) of the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria 1999 to pass again the Electoral Act, 2022, sponsored by Hon. Ben Igbakpa on the floor of the House on Tuesday at plenary.

While stepping down the motion, the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Ahmed Wase, who presided over the plenary, said that the procedure of presenting the motion was faulty.

He said that the right procedure should be followed by Igbakpa and the motion resubmitted for consideration.

In his response, Hon. Ben Igbakpa, informed the Deputy Speaker that he had submitted a petition last week under a constitutional point of order but was advised by the Speaker to bring a motion on notice to be considered.

The Deputy speaker advised Hon Igbakpa to consult the House Committee on Rules and Business and follow all House rules before submitting the motion.

Hon. Igbakpa agreed to do as advised and resubmitted the motion.

He noted Nigerians deserve good legislation that would guarantee credible elections in the country.

Hon. Igbakpa added “The 9th Assembly would be remembered for two bills which are the Petroleum Industry Act and the Electoral Act if the house overrides the President ”.

He said: “Clearly the Constitution says it is 30 days leeway and we have gone beyond the 30 days. But the Constitution also says that it is not automatic that you override, but if you are convinced as a House that that amendment must stand. If you are not convinced by the argument advanced by the President or in some cases and his case, there are no arguments advanced, then you can override.’’

The speaker reminded members that two-thirds votes or signatures are required not a voice vote.

He noted the following procedures must be strictly abuse, filing a motion and representing it in the house within the legislative calendar.

But with this new development by the deputy speaker stepping down the motion has again made this motion suffer a setback.

Other matters.

The House also considered a Bill for an Act to Establish Federal College of Agriculture, Geidam, Yobe State to Provide Full-time Courses leading to the Award of Diploma, Higher National Diploma in Agriculture and Allied Disciplines and be Responsible for the Due Administration of the College; and for Related Matters brought by Honourable Lawan Shettima Ali.

A Bill for an Act to Establish Federal University of Science and Technology, Remo, Ogun State (FUSTRO) to make Comprehensive Provisions for its Due Management and Administration; and for Related Matters brought by Honourable Adewunmi Oriyomi Onanuga passed through Second Reading.

Also, a Bill for an Act to Provide for Establishment of National Emergency Medical Services Agency; and for Related Matters passed through Second Reading.

 

 

Olusola Akintonde and Qasim Akinreti

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