- Yakubu Dogara said funding will not affect elections in 2019
- Dogara said the House of Assembly plan to attend to the electoral act bill returned by President Buhari
Yakubu Dogara, the speaker of the House of Representatives, said that funding would not be a threat to the 2019 elections and that the Electoral Act Bill returned by President Muhammadu Buhari would also be speedily attended to by the legislature.
The speaker, who spoke in Abuja on Tuesday, October 9, said a delay in the passage of the budget would not have affected the elections because the 2018 budget had a Service Wide Vote provision of N300bn, which the federal government could draw from to conduct the elections in the absence of the INEC budget, Punch reports.
He, however, added that the members of the House will look into the budget and pass it within a week.
Dogara said: “We are here to serve the public good. These issues (INEC budget, electoral bill) are outstanding and we know funding was never going to be a threat anyway as insinuated.
“We showed that we have in the budget a provision for Service Wide Vote which is about N300bn and whatever was the emergency could have been met from that service-wide fund that we have allocated in the budget.
“But, as we are back now, we will set ourselves to accomplish what is there in the interest of our people even if it means within a day or two. We have done that in the area of ease of doing business. There were times within a week that we concluded the first, second and third reading of a bill and passed it into law just because there was a need for us to expand the economic space for participation of citizens in job creation, wealth creation and in rebuilding the economy especially in the wake of the economic recession in this country. So, nothing is impossible.
“I can assure you that as soon as we have the report from the committees, probably within the week, in no time, we should be able to deal with these issues relating to elections.
“Whether it is the electoral act, funding for INEC; we will ensure that appropriate funding levels are approved for INEC and the electoral act is passed in no time. Even if it means doing it within a day, we are committed to doing it because the key thing that guarantees democracy is fair, transparent and credible elections and we will not joke with it as politicians."
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Legit.ng earlier reported that Senate majority leader, Ahmed Lawan, assured the All Progressives Congress (APC) that the senators of the party will do everything within their powers to ensure the impeachment of Senate President Bukola Saraki.
Lawan said when the National Assembly is reopened for session, he and others in APC will ensure that Saraki is replaced and the INEC budget along with that of security agencies are passed. He made the statement at the recently concluded APC national convention held over the weekend.
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