- The possibility of voting by Nigerians in foreign countries does not seem like a distant dream anymore
- This is because President Muhammadu Buhari has said that he was no problem with the call for it
- President Buhari on Tuesday, February 11, said that if the National Assembly (NASS) approves voting by Nigerians abroad, then it becomes constitutional
President Muhammadu Buhari has spoken on the possibility of Nigerians in the diaspora participating fully in electoral activities, with specific regard to voting.
President Buhari made this comment on Tuesday, February 11, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia after the just-concluded African Union (AU) summit.
He said that the presidency has no problem with diaspora voting which has been clamoured for by a section of the electorate and some stakeholders.
However, the president said that the only condition on which this can be a constitutional norm in Nigeria is if the National Assembly agrees to amend the necessary laws to make it a reality.
Speaking with members of the executive committee of the Nigerian community in Ethiopia, he said: ”I have said it severally that I am not against it.
"However, you will need to convince the National Assembly to amend the relevant laws to make Diaspora voting a reality.”
Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that some of the political parties which were deregistered by the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) on Thursday, February 7, had condemned the electoral body's action.
INEC had said the parties were deregistered due to their failure to win at least one political seat in the 2019 general elections. The electoral body axed 74 parties, including the Alliance For Democracy (AD), Fresh Democratic Party (ADP), and others.
Reacting to the development, Okey Chikwendum, said the electoral body's action is against the constitution, Premium Times reports. Chikwendum also described the INEC's action as “an evidence of misplaced priority”.
He said his party and others have already dragged INEC to court on the issue and the court will soon rule on the matter.
In his own reaction, Chizoba Onu, the vice-chairman of the southeast chapter of Fresh Democratic Party (FDP), said she is not surprised. Onu said Nigeria is not practising democracy as it is being done in other parts of the world.
According to her, INEC had earlier been prevented from deregistering political parties. She also faulted the yardstick of not winning any political seat used by INEC to axe the parties, arguing that the electoral process is not credible.
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