senate

Electoral Amendment: We Will Veto Bill, Senate Vows

The Senate on Friday vowed to veto the bill saying the new electoral draft was very significant to the conduct and outcome of the 2019 elections.

The Vice-Chairman of the Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Ben Murray-Bruce, told newsmen that the upper chamber of the National Assembly would lobby members of the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress, in the chamber to veto the bill.

Murray-Bruce, who had initially withheld the Senate’s reaction on the subject matter in order to get brief from the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, later spoke to the press after getting in touch with Saraki.

Murray-Bruce, who said the amendments to the bill would guarantee free and fair general elections in 2019, said the Senate would do everything possible to veto the bill.

The Senate’s spokesman said, “First of all, we think it is a mistake not to sign the bill. We think Buhari should have signed it. We want the APC senators and all Nigerians to understand that that bill was the right thing to do at this period of our national life.

“We will do everything possible to work with the progressive APC senators to get the right number of votes to override it. We will override it.”

He added, “We want credible elections and that was why we hoped the President would sign the (amended) Electoral Act. Now that he has refused to sign it, we will talk to the APC members in the Senate to look at Nigeria and not their party. They should look at Nigeria and not their party.

“There are aspects that INEC can implement on their own without the law.”

When asked later if he was reacting in his personal capacity as a senator or as the Senate’s spokesman, Murray-Bruce said, “It was the Senate reacting, I told you.”

Reacting, the House of Representatives said it would take action on the assent withdrawal after Dogara had read the letter to lawmakers in plenary.

The Chairman of the House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Mr. Abdulrazak Namdas, who spoke to one of our correspondents on the telephone, said, “The House can only take a decision after the letter had been read on the floor of the chamber.”

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