Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari has officially communicated his decision to decline assent to the Electoral Bill, 2018 as amended and recently transmitted to the President.
The President’s decision is contained in a letter addressed to the President of the Senate, which was read on the floor of the red chamber during Tuesday’s plenary. He identified three reasons for declining assent to the Bill.
According to him, the reason to decline assent to the Bill was because “the amendment to the sequence of elections in section 25 of the principal Act, may infringe upon the constitutionally guaranteed discretion of the INEC to organise, undertake, and supervise all elections provided in the constitution.”
Secondly, “the amendment to section 138 of the principal Act to delete two crucial grounds upon which an election may be challenged by candidates, unduly limits the rights of candidates in elections to a free & fair electoral review process.”
President Muhammadu Buhari also believes that “amendments to section 152 sub sections 3-5 of the principal Act may raise constitutional issues over the competence of the National Assembly to legislate over local government elections.”
In another development, the Senate has also resolved to screen for possible confirmation, all nominees of the President for the positions of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Deputy Governor, and members of the monetary policy committee of the apex bank.
Addressing Journalists on the development against the background of senate’s resolution not to consider nominations sent by the executive, Senate spokesman, Senator Aliyu Sabi said the lawmakers decided to reverse their earlier decision because of overriding public interest.