The Presidency has assured that President Muhammadu Buhari will do the needful before the expiration of the 30 days constitutional provision for him to assent to the Electoral Act Amendment Bill expires.
The 30 days constitutional provisions for the President to assent to the Electoral Act Amendment Bill will expire on Sunday and the National Assembly may likely overrides Buhari’s veto if he fails to either append his signature to the Bill or return it to the parliament.
The Bill was transmitted to the President for his assent on Thursday, 2nd August, 2018 after the corrected version was passed by the National Assembly on 24th July but he has the on two occasions withheld his assent to the Bill.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang, assures that “we will do the needful before the Bill expires.”
Enang told State House Correspondents who sought his reaction to the allegation that President Buhari has again refused to sign the bill into law, explaining that the Bill was being studied by the President’s team before he signs it.
Enang debunked claims that President Buhari had vetoed the Bill, saying, the “final clean copy of the Bill which was received by President Muhamamdu Buhari on the 2nd of August, 2018, is still undergoing thorough scrutiny by the President.
“Mr. President has not vetoed the bill. What some people are not aware of was that when the second copy was received after the initial rejection, it was discovered that there were typographical errors which the National Assembly needed to correct and they did it and sent it back on the 24th of July and this is still being studied before presidential assent.”
The clarification followed clams that the President has vetoed the Electoral Acts Amendment bill for the second time in 2018, a development, Enang said was not correct.
Enang said, “It is good for people to cross check their facts first before feeding the public with the wrong information. As you know the President embarked on a 10 day leave soon after we submitted the Bill to him, so we should wait.”
Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Mahmoud Yakubu had said recently that the Bill will not be used for the 2019 general elections unless it was signed into law at least six months before the election.
The Bill contains relevant provisions that is expected to guide INEC in the conduct of the 2019 election.