The leadership of the House of Representatives on Wednesday disclosed that the report on the Electoral (Amendment) Bill was stepped down on Tuesday, as a result of low turn-out of members who are currently on party member drive at their various federal constituencies.
Chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Hon. Benjamin Kalu disclosed this during the weekly press briefing at the National Assembly complex, Abuja, while responding to a question on the delay in consideration of the report of the Electoral amendment bill, which was slated for consideration.
He said: “On the Electoral Act, we have promised Nigerians that the bill will be out before the middle of this year which is June, we are certain that it will go beyond the middle of this year.
“The determination of the House is to get it discharged even before the end of April; as you all know, the report is ready, it was a table for the presentation Tuesday but due to the fact that the most members wanted the report to come in and be considered the same day and the House needed to be full to do that because the Electoral Act is what you do and you have a lot of constituencies not represented.
“As you are aware, most members are at their various constituencies now particularly members of APC, doing the membership drive and if you consider the report and you cut out some members who are supposed to be there to see whether the clauses, paragraphs, the provision of the particular bill covers their interest or not, you are doing a disservice to the people that they represent.
“So in the wisdom of the leadership of the House, the House decided to suspend it until we are able to have a fuller house to be able to do the consideration because it is one of those that affect the whole nation.
“It is time-sensitive, in law we say time is of the essence in the formalization of this Electoral Act and having that in mind, we are going to prioritise the Electoral Act because of the time element in it.
“Be assured that in no distant time, it is going to come up for laying because they have finished their technical work on it so let’s have a fuller house that will be able to ensure that all the clauses carry the intention of the House,” Hon. Kalu noted.
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