- Governor Nasir El-Rufai has finally reacted to President Buhari's refusal to sign Electoral Act amendment bill
- El-Rufai said that the president should have signed Electoral Act amendment bill into law
- According to the governor, from what he read, the few clauses that were amended did not substantially change the electoral framework
Despite the joy expressed by most members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) over President Muhammadu Buhari's refusal to sign Electoral Act amendment bill into law, Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna state, has said the president would have signed it.
In an exclusive interview with Channels TV, El-Rufai, said he was indifferent to President Buhari's position on the Electoral Act amendment, adding that there was no substantial changes in the electoral act after he looked at the provisions of the amendment bill.
Legit.ng gathered that he said he was one of those who had advocated that it should not be assented to because there was an agenda from the National Assembly that was not in the national interest.
He, however, said that he did not see any issues in the last version of the Electoral Act amendment bill, saying that he believed the president got properly advised before withholding assent.
He said: "I am indifferent to it. I have looked at the provisions of the amendment bill, there is nothing there that substantially changes what is in the electoral act, frankly. Should the president have assented to it? Personally, I think he should have.
"That is my personal opinion. But that was before he took the decision to withhold and assent to the latest version, not the earlier version that tried to change the order of elections. I was one of those that advocated that it should not be assented to because there was an agenda from the National Assembly that was not in the national interest.
"But the last version, I did not see any issues there. I am sure the president got properly advised before withholding assent but I do not think what I read, the few clauses that were amended, substantially changes the electoral framework.
Asked if he was bothered about the fact that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) would not be able to do electronic transfers of result, El-Rufai said that the amendment bill the president withheld assent has no provision for electronic transfer of result.
PAY ATTENTION: Install our latest app for Android, read best news on Nigeria’s #1 news app
According to him, it does not stop INEC from doing it because the electoral act is flexible and it allows INEC to use technology to advance the cause of fair and credible elections. He said INEC can still do electronic transfer even without it in the bill.
"It is not everything that is in the Act. The Act gives INEC the power to determine methods and procedures of election. INEC can do it should they want to do it. That is up to them. How safe is their existence this day of cybercrime, hacking, Analytica, Russians and Trump?
"Maybe we should take a second look at that. Maybe, if it is in the bill. But it was not in the bill. Those that were shouting it is because of this electronic have not read the bill; they are just shouting," he said.
Speaking on the appointment of AIG Mohammed Adamu as the acting IGP by President Muhammadu Buhari, El-Rufai said Nigerians should stop religious and ethnic sentiments.
He said: "Again, the region, ethnicity problem. The president has announced an acting IG. That IG cannot become an IG until the Police Council says. What is the police council? It consists of the president and the state governors.
"So if the 36 state governors and even a few of them object, the man would not be the IG because the IG is for the whole country. For me, we should not be asking whether the IG is from this part of the country or nor.
"We should be looking at his resume, whether he is competent or not credible Inspector-General of Police. When we receive his resume we would have to make comments on him in the Police Council. And thankfully, if I am of the view he is not good enough to be our IG, I would stand on it."
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that Yakubu Dogara, the speaker of the House of Representatives, raised the alarm over the fate of the forthcoming general elections.
It was reported that he said he was worried about the refusal of President Muhammadu Buhari to sign the 2019 Electoral Act Amendment Bill.
NAIJ.com (naija.ng) upgrades to Legit.ng to serve its readers better Lagos Governor
We are honestly tired of Buhari and Atiku | - on Legit TV