By Ovasa Ogaga,
Deputy Senate President, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege has said that he couldn’t have single-handedly written the amended electoral bill as it is being claimed on social media, noting that the Amended Electoral is a collective effort of members of the National Assembly.
Omo-Agege who is also an All Progressive Congress governorship aspirant in Delta State, while speaking at a consultative meeting in Ughelli North, called on the public to disregard the misinformation making the rounds that he alone wrote the electoral act, noting that the people have been misinformed about the amended act which was enabled by the National Assembly, and duly assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Going forward, we are not going to sit down and allow the state government to use the instrumentality of the Nigeria Police to intimidate our people. I may declare that, yes, they may wield power here at the state level, and that we are also available to checkmate the activities in Abuja.
“That was the thrust of the remarks that I made there but I also understand that there has been some misinformation and misconstruction of those remarks most especially to the extent that, I Ovie Omo Agege claimed authorship of the new electoral act.
“So people should take a deep breath, don’t lose their sense of humour, no one person alone writes a bill and pass a bill in the National Assembly.”
On the controversial section, 84 (12) of the amended electoral act states that no political appointee at any level shall be a voting delegate or be voted for at the convention or congress of any political party for the nomination of candidates for any election and has been nullified by a Federal High Court in Umuahia, Abia State but currently being challenged on appeal by the National Assembly.
Omo-Agege said “It’s now up to the courts to exercise their section six powers of the constitution on judicial review to decide whether or not this section stays or should be deleted.
“There’s not a chance in the world, I will claim authorship of section 84(12) when I’m opposed to section 84(12)”.
He assured his party members that the introduction of the BAVAS system of voting will bring transparency and ensure a fair and credible electoral process for the 2023 forthcoming general elections.
“We understand that when the first electoral act was promulgated in 2010, it was a good law. It was written and passed with the best intentions but in the implementation of the act, so many imperfections, so many mischiefs raised their heads and ever since, we’ve been fighting and battling on how to address those mischiefs taken into account that the law is organic. In the course of the implementation, you find out the loopholes, and the lacuna that you need to address and one of that is the introduction of technology to address those toxic votes that emanate from different places.
Omo-Agege submitted that, in supporting the electoral bill, his intention is for all Nigerians to benefit from the electoral processes as the 2023 forthcoming general election draws near.