According to the Daily Post, The National Assembly has vowed to override President Muhammadu Buhari’s veto on the Electoral Act Amendment Bill.
The bill seeks to re-order the sequence of the polls during general elections starting from the 2019 polls. The federal lawmakers want their election to come up first, followed by that of state lawmakers and governors, and lastly the presidential election.
The Senate has made its intention to exercise its veto powers should Buhari withhold assent on the bill known.
The House of Representatives had earlier said the lawmakers would not hesitate to override the President’s decision if he vetoed the bill.
The Chairman of the House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Abdulrazak Namdas, told Punch that members would not change their minds on the Electoral Act as amended.
He said that the National Assembly expected the President to append his signature to the bill.
He had said, “We are serious about this issue and we are not ready to reverse it.
“For now, the bill has gone to Mr. President and we are waiting for his response. If his response is that he won ’t sign, we are ready to override his veto.
“I can assure you that in both chambers of the National Assembly, we will get the required two – thirds majority to override the veto.”
Confirming the uniformity of the choice by the two chambers, the Deputy Chairman of the Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Ben Murray-Bruce, also told the newspaper that the lawmakers were set to override the President on the bill.
Senator Ben Bruce said the position of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, on the amendment was “irrelevant” to the National Assembly and its legislative functions.
According to him, “If you understand the principle of separation of powers, you will see that is not necessary. We make laws for the country.
“That is our job, to make laws. We make the law and they obey it. It is non-negotiable.
“We make laws for the country and everybody including the executive must obey the laws we make. It is not for them to decide which laws to obey or which ones to accept or not.
“If the bill is not signed within 30 days, then we will override it. It is not important if the President signs it or not.
“Once it is 30 days, we will override it. It is irrelevant. They have just 30 days. If he vetoes it in 30 days, we will override him.”
From The Daily Post
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This article was first published on 5th March 2018