The leading headlines of mainstream Nigerian newspapers for Tuesday, June 11, focus on the decision of an Abuja High Court to use the open ballot system for the election of principal officers of the ninth National Assembly.
Vanguard reports that there was a new twist to the forthcoming election of principal officers of the ninth National Assembly (NASS) as an Abuja High Court presided over by Justice Othman Musa, on Monday, June 10, issued an interim order for the use of the open ballot system.
The decision of the court came after an ex-parte application and affidavit filed by a bigwig of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Jibrin Barau. The court therefore restrained clerks of the NASS and Senate from relying on the 2015 standing Order (as amended).
The Nation on its part reports that making a case for the open ballot system, Senator Barau said: “The 8th Senate inherited the Senate Standing Orders 2011 which was (sic) amended by the 7th Senate on the 24th May, 2011, having followed all procedures of amendment laid down under Order 110 of the Senate Standing Orders 2007 and that throughout the tenure of the 8th Senate no amendment or change was made to the said amended Senate Standing Orders 2011.”
Punch reports that ahead of the inauguration of the ninth NASS, the APC leadership has directed all its members-elect to support Senator Ahmed Lawan and Femi Gbajabiamila as Senate president and speaker of the House of Representatives respectively.
On its part, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Monday urged its senators-elect in the NASS to throw their weight behind Senator Ali Ndume for Senate president and Umar Bago for speaker of the House of Representatives.
Still on the endorsement of key members of the ninth NASS, This Day reports that the move by the APC to urge its senators-elect to vote for Lawan and Gbajabiamila came after an emergency meeting convened by the ruling party on Monday in Abuja.
The Guardian reports that President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday assented to a bill that officially recognised June 12 as the Democracy day in Nigeria.
The senior special assistant on National Assembly matters (Senate) Senator Ita Enang, speaking on President Buhari's move, said: “May 29th will only be handover date and working day. By the Act amended and signed by Mr. President, May 29 is no more a public holiday. June 12 is now a public holiday and the country’s Democracy Day.”
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