Senate rejects Buhari’s bill seeking amendment of section of electoral act 2022

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The Senate on Wednesday threw out President Muhammdu Buhari’s bill seeking the amendment of section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act 2022 which bars appointees to political offices from contesting for election from party primary level without resigning.

The bill entitled ‘A Bill for an Act to amend the Electoral Act 2022 and for related matters, 2022,” was overwhelming rejected by the lawmakers.

Recall that the president wrote to the senate last week seeking an amendment of section 84 (2) subsection 12 in the 2021 Electoral Act.

He asked the lawmakers to amend section 84 (2) Subsection 12 which states that no political appointee shall be a voting delegate or be voted for at the convention or congress of any political party for the purpose of the nomination of any candidate for an election.

Buhari said such restrictions disenfranchise political office holders from exercising their rights to vote or be voted for.

“Hence, it will be stretching things beyond the constitutional limit to import extraneous restriction into the constitution on account of practical application of section 84(12) of the bill where political parties’ conventions and congresses were to hold earlier than 30 days to the election,” the president said.

The bill scaled the first reading on Tuesday (yesterday) despite a court order barring the Senate from acting on it.

The senate president, Mr. Ahmad Lawan challenged the court’s order saying the judiciary cannot in any circumstances stop the Legislature from performing its constitutional duties.

Before the Senate commenced consideration of the Bill on Wednesday, Senator Adamu Aliero had, while citing order 52(5) of the senate standing rules, urged the senate president to jettison proposed action on the Bill.

But Lawan reiterated his position that only senators may reject the bill and not the judiciary seeking to stop the chamber from performing its lawful duties through an order.

Senators however voted overwhelmingly against the bill to stop it from being read a second time.

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