- President Muhammadu Buhari's refusal to assent to the Electoral Act bill is brewing reactions from Nigerians, especially in political circles
- PDP's presidential campaign Organization (PPCO) has asked the NASS to override the president's position
- In a recent statement, the PPCO called on Nigerians and stakeholders to fight for the victory of democracy and for free and credible 2019 polls
In reaction to President Muhammadu Buhari’s refusal to assent to the Electoral Act Bill, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)'s Presidential campaign Organization (PPCO) has charged the National Assembly (NASS) to save the nation’s democracy by immediately overriding the presidency's position.
In a recent statement signed by the party's media boss, Kola Ologbondiyan, on Friday, December 7, the PPCO claimed that the legislative action has become important, alleging that the president’s decision is intended to hold the nation to ransom, inject crisis into the electioneering process, Nigerian Tribune reports.
It said Buhari’s constant refusal to sign amendments passed to check rigging in the election, raises issues of his sincerity of purpose and has the capacity to bring about national turmoil and violence and ultimately endanger democracy in the country.
In the statement, the organisation pointed Nigerians to note that the president has withheld assent to the amendment, without any sufficient reason.
The statement said: “Nigerians can recall how the Buhari Presidency plotted to plunge the 2019 elections into a needless controversy by delaying the submission of the election budget to the National Assembly, presenting it at the time the legislators were commencing their annual vacation and asking for virement of funds already approved for development projects, instead of sending a fresh supplementary budget for the election.
“It is unfortunate that Mr. President, in his desperation to hold on to power, has resorted to taking steps that are capable of destabilizing our nation, just because the people are resolute in voting him out of office democratically.
“It is also instructive to note that President Buhari is mortally afraid of the amendments because they essentially checked the All Progressives Congress (APC) rigging plans, including the use of underage and alien voters, vote-buying, alteration of results and manipulation of voter register; for which the APC and the Buhari Presidency have been boasting of winning the 2019 elections.”
Appealing to the NASS to salvage the country's democracy and avert an impending crisis, the PPCO also charged all political parties, stakeholders and all Nigerians to rise in the interest of the nation and demand the adherence to the rule of law and processes that will guarantee the conduct of free, fair and credible elections in 2019, “as nothing short of that would be accepted.”
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that the senior special assistant to the president on NASS matters, Senator Ita Enang, had appealed to Nigerians to discard reports purporting that President Buhari will not sign the bill.
Enang stated that Buhari was still operating within the time frame allowed by the Nigerian Constitution to either sign the bill or withhold his assent.
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