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Situation Room Tasks NASS On Electoral Act Amendment Bill

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Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room, a coalition of over 70 organizations, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to assent to the Electoral Act Amendment Bill 2021 with immediate effect.
The coalition, in a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja on Friday said it was concerned that President Buhari was yet to assent to the Bill since it was passed and transmitted to him by the National Assembly.
The statement jointly signed by its convener, Ene Obi, and co-conveners, Asma’u Joda and James Ugochukwu, urged the National Assembly to invoke its constitutional powers to veto President Buhari, should he decline to assent to the Electoral Bill.
“It is not in doubt that President Buhari has till Sunday to assent to the Bill. We urge the National Assembly, in the interest of Nigerians, to veto the President should he refuse to assent to the Bill.
“The National Assembly has the power and they should use it this time around.
“Electoral reforms in Nigeria have been implemented mainly through the review of the Electoral Act. The Act has undergone many changes since return to democracy.
“The current 2010 Electoral Act has been amended three times (in 2010, 2011 and 2015). A fourth amendment attempt in the 8th Assembly failed just before the 2019 elections”.
It noted that the Bill, has provisions that would address gaps in the current law on use of technology; electronic voting; collation and transmission of results; cost of campaigns; process for party primaries and nomination of candidates.
“A key concern for us, are the calls by some Nigerian Governors regarding direct primaries in the Electoral Act Amendment Bill. Situation Room notes that these calls have asked the President to decline assent to the Bill that is set to become one of the most significant pieces of legislation made by the Ninth Assembly because of the provision on direct primaries.
“With several of the progressive amendments in the Bill that will impart positively in our elections and contribute to deepening democracy in Nigeria, it will be a great disservice to the country if the Bill is not assented to in time for the 2023 general elections.
“We urge the President to sign the Bill into law without delay and it will still be within his prerogative to bring fresh amendments after signing the Bill, like he did with the Petroleum Industry Bill which he was highly commended for”.
Among groups that endorsed the statement were; Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre (PLAC), CLEEN Foundation, Action Aid Nigeria, Centre for Women and Adolescent Empowerment, Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD), African Centre for Entrepreneurship and Information Development (ACEIDEV), Rule of Law and Accountability Advocacy Centre (RULAAC).
Others are: Justice Development and Peace Commission (JPDC) Nnewi, ASPILOS Foundation, Mac-Jim Foundation, Kimpact Development Initiative, Democratic Action Group (DAG), Women’s Rights to Education Programme, EDO CSOs, Young Innovators and Vocational Training Initiative (YVITI), New Initiative for Social Development (NISD).

 

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Ex-Minister, Senator Emerge PDP Senatorial Candidates In Kwara

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Former Minister of Sports, Malam Bolaji Abdullahi, has emerged the People’s Democratic Party’s (PDP) candidate for Kwara central senatorial district.
Abdullahi was elected through affirmation by delegates at the PDP’s senatorial primary at Mariam Event Centre, Ilorin.
The national officer that conducted the primary, Hashim Jimoh, announced Abdullahi as the winner, having been returned unopposed.
Also a former Senator, Rafiu Ibrahim was elected as the PDP’s candidate for Kwara south senatorial district.
Ibrahim also emerged through affirmation at the primary in Omu- Aran in Irepodun local government area of the state.
Chairman of PDP in Kwara south, Comrade Bisi Fakayode raised up Ibrahim’s hand after his unanimous election.
Speaking with reporters after his emergence, Abdullahi thanked the PDP stakeholders and delegates for confirming him as Kwara central’s candidate.
He also thanked journalists for their support, adding that :” I do not take your support and that of the PDP’s stakeholders for granted.
Abdullahi assured the people of his constituency of quality representation at the Senate.

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PDP Primary: Two Ondo Senators Fail To Secure Return Tickets

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Two sitting senators from Ondo State, Ayo Akinyelure, and Nicholas Tofowomo, have lost their bid to return to the upper chamber of the National Assembly.
They lost in the primary of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, held on Monday in the state.
Akinyelure is representing Ondo Central Senatorial District while Tofowomo represents Ondo South Senatorial District.
In the primary held in Akure, the state capital, Akinyelure came second, polling 58 votes behind Mr Ifedayo Adedipe, SAN, who scored 82 votes.
On the other hand, Tofowomo scored 74 votes behind a former Deputy Governor of the state, Mr Agboola Ajayi, who polled 78 votes in the exercise that held in Okitipupa, in the Okitipupa Local Government Area of the state.
In the Ondo North Senatorial District, Mr Adetokunbo Modupe, defeated his opponent, Mr Foluso Adefemi, with 124 votes as against 93 votes.
Speaking with journalists after the election, Akinyelure attributed his loss to the influence of the former Governor Olusegun Mimiko, who did not support him.
Akinyelure said, “As a ranking Senator and with all I have done for them in Ondo Central Senatorial District, the three ad- hoc delegates that favour Olusegun Mimiko, they gave instructions for them to vote me out. I am happy about this but I know my God will never fail.
“I know what I am talking about. We have six local governments in the central, by the grace of God I am still a sitting Senator. The election was so transparent but I know that with the volume of what I have done for the Ondo Central Senatorial District, I did not expect to be paid this way. But I have a destiny that nobody can stop.”
The winner of the Ondo Central primary, Adedipe, said it was the first time he would be contesting for elective office, calling all members of the party to support him to win the main election in 2023.
He said, “The exercise has been peaceful and very free. It is the PDP that has won and not Ifedayo. It is the party that conducts a free and fair election. My fellow aspirants should see this as a vote for all of us.”

 

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Rivers Dep Gov, Others Win Senatorial Tickets

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Rivers State Deputy Governor, Mrs Ipallibo Harry Banigo, has won the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) ticket for the Rivers West Senatorial District election.
Ipalibo, who hails from Degema Local Government Area, scored 264 votes to clinch the party’s ticket for Rivers West.
The senatorial primaries, which held across the three senatorial districts, also produced Allwell Onyesoh as the candidate of the PDP for Rivers East.
Onyesoh, who hails from Etche Local Government Area, was said to have scored 270 votes to earn him the senatorial flag of the party.
The party also gave its ticket for the Rivers Southeast Senatorial District to a former House of Representatives member, incumbent senator Barinada Mpigi.
The state Publicity Secretary of PDP, Sydney Tambari Gbara, who described the exercise as peaceful, said consensus method was used in some areas to elect the candidates.

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