- A Lagos-based lawyer, Femi Falana, has revealed why President Muhammadu Buhari should sign new Electoral Bill
- He said the bill should be signed now to avoid altering the arrangements for 2019 elections
- The National Assembly had on July 24 passed the Bill and transmitted it to Buhari for his assent
A Lagos-based lawyer and human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently sign the new Electoral Act Amendment Bill into law.
Vanguard reports that he said the bill should be signed now to avoid altering the arrangements for 2019 elections, in accordance with the ECOWAS protocol on democracy and good governance act.
NAIJ.com gathered that the National Assembly had first amended the Electoral Act but it was rejected by President Buhari due to what he described as provisions inconsistent with the 1999 constitution.
The lawmakers then expunged the said provisions and passed a new bill, which had been transmitted to the President for assent.
Falana said the new bill should be promptly signed into law, in view of the fact that Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has announced that the 2019 elections would commence in February 2019.
He said: “In making this, call the attention of the President ought to be drawn to article 2 (1) of the Economic Community of West African States Protocol A/SP1/12/01 on Democracy and Good Governance, which provides that: ‘No substantial modification shall be made to the electoral laws in the last six (6) months before the elections, except with the consent of majority of political actors’.”
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com had previously reported that the presidency denied reports that the Electoral Act amendment bill passed by the National Assembly was rejected by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The senior special adviser to the president on National Assembly matters, Ita Enang, said the bill which was passed by the lawmakers on on July 24 and transmitted to President Buhari on August 3, is still awaiting the president’s assent.
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It was reported that Enang said that media reports that the president rejected the bill were not true.
Stating that the president declined assent to a bill transmitted to him on June 27, Enang said the one the lawmakers passed hours before they proceeded on their annual recess was still with the president.
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