The newspaper review for Tuesday, August 14, leads with the presidency saying that the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was behaving like a militant group instead of following the democratic tenets among other stories.
Vanguard reports that the presidency on Monday said that the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, was behaving like a militant group instead of following the democratic tenets in its activities on national issues.
This is as the presidency has also said that the victory recorded by the All Progressives Congress, APC, at the National Assembly bye elections in Katsina, Bauchi and Kogi states at the weekend was an indication of President Muhammadu Buhari’s acceptance by Nigerians and what will be expected in the 2019 elections.
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Briefing State House correspondents at the Presidential Villa Abuja, the senior special assistant to the President on media and publicity Mallam Garba Shehu, flanked by his colleague in the office of the vice president, Laolu Akande, said that each of the bye-elections was considered to be epic in nature.
The presidential spokesman said that the allegation of bribery for votes and vote-buying was a serious offence and that it was the duty of citizens who have evidence of such infractions to report to the appropriate quarters.
The Punch reports that two lawmakers, Senator Rafiu Adebayo and Senator Isa Misau, have sued the Attorney-General of the Federation, the police, the Department of State Services, the Senate and seven others in order to stop the attempts to remove Senate president Bukola Saraki.
Senators Adebayo and Misau, who are supporters of Saraki, instituted the fresh court action marked FHC/ABJ/CS/872/2018 before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Monday.
Other defendants in the suit are: the majority and deputy majority leaders of the Senate, the Clerk of the Senate, the deputy clerk of the Senate, the Senate president, the Deputy Senate president and the deputy minority leader.
In the originating summons filed on their behalf by Mahmud Magaji (SAN), the plaintiffs want the Federal High Court to determine whether in view of the provisions of Section 50(1) (a) and (2) of the 1999 Constitution, Saraki, who defected to another political party as a result of the division in his former party, can be made to vacate his office other than in accordance with Section 50 of the constitution.
The Nation reports hte Federal High Court in Abuja has been asked to among others, restrain the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), the Inspector General of Police (IGP) and the Department of State Services (DSS) from supporting any effort to sack Senate president Bukola Saraki through means other than that provided for under Section 50(2)(c ) of the Constitution.
The request from part of the reliefs in a suit filed on Monday by Senators Rafiu Adebayo (PDP, Kwara South) and Isa Misau (PDP, Bauchi Central) through a team of lawyers, including former Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) Kanu Agabi (SAN) and Mahmud Magaji (SAN).
The plaintiffs stated that, going by recent occurrences and utterances by some leaders of a faction of All Progressives Congress (APC), from which they had defected, they were convinced of plots to force Saraki off the Senate President’s seat by means other than that provided in Section 50(2)(c ) of the Constitution.
Section 50(2) provides: “The President or Deputy President of the Senate or the Speaker or Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives shall vacate his office…. (c) if he is removed from office by a resolution of the Senate or of the House of Representatives, as the case may be, by the votes of not less than two-thirds majority of the members of that House.”
This Day reports that President Muhammadu Buhari has again vetoed the Electoral Act Amendment Bill 2018, citing drafting issues, which he said might affect the interpretation and application of the principal act.
According to the president in separate communications to the president of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, and the Speaker of House of Representatives, Hon Yakubu Dogara, cited by This Day, some of the provisions of the bill would adversely affect the operations of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The president was, however, vague about the offensive provisions even as the veto meant a rejection of the use of electronic card readers for the conduct of the 2019 general election, which many political analysts said would make the nation’s electoral process cleaner.
This is the second time the president would be vetoing alterations to the electoral law.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Ita Enang, however, confirmed to This Day on phone last night that his boss declined assent to the second amendment bill for stated reasons, adding, however, that a third bill on the same subject that was passed on July 24, 2018, was pending before the president.
The Guardian reports that the much-anticipated special sitting of both chambers of the National Assembly to consider the N242 billion 2019 election budget may have been dropped.Although there was no official communication from the senate leadership on the matter, lawmakers who were approached for comments claimed they had not received invitation for any session.
Checks, however, showed that the special sitting was aborted because many lawmakers have travelled for Hajj while others were out of the country on holiday.
After a meeting last Wednesday between the leadership of the National Assembly and the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, it was announced that the chambers might be reconvened to consider the election budget this week.
Yakubu had said: “The most important thing is that INEC was invited to meet with the National Assembly leadership on how the proposed budget for the 2019 elections can be speedily considered and appropriated. We have been assured of speedy passage of the budget perhaps as early as next week.”
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