IPAC to make in­puts into Elec­toral Act amend­ment

The Punch - - POLITICS TODAY - Fri­day Olokor, Abuja

The In­ter-party Ad­vi­sory Coun­cil has ex­pressed its readi­ness to con­trib­ute to the amend­ment to the Elec­toral Act be­ing pro­posed in the 9th Na­tional Assem­bly.

The coun­cil, which has over 91 po­lit­i­cal par­ties as mem­bers, said it would meet with the Deputy Pres­i­dent of the Se­nate, Ovie Omo-agege, on the mat­ter in Jan­uary 2020.

The Pres­i­dent of IPAC, Chief Peter Ameh, stated this in Abuja dur­ing an in­ter­view with The PUNCH.

he was an­swer­ing ques­tions on whether the coun­cil would spon­sor any bill in the 9th Na­tional Assem­bly on the amend­ment to the na­tion’s elec­toral law.

Ameh said, “We are wait­ing for their (law­mak­ers’) pub­lic hear­ing and we will take our own bill there. We will just take our own as an ad­den­dum to what Ovie Omo-agege is al­ready spon­sor­ing on elec­toral amend­ment.

“This year, we pre­pared a copy of our so­lu­tions to elec­toral and con­sti­tu­tional is­sues. We are go­ing to for­ward the bill to Omo-agege with a cov­er­ing let­ter and try to have a meet­ing with him. We all know he is try­ing to present it at the pub­lic hear­ing on the amend­ment.

“We are go­ing to meet him early next year, as from Jan­uary, be­cause this time it is al­ready late and we are very busy. We will meet him to dis­cuss and add our in­put on how to end elec­toral vi­o­lence in Nige­ria.”

The PUNCH re­ported that among the rec­om­men­da­tions by IPAC in the pro­posed bill sighted by our correspond­ent in­clude the abo­li­tion of the State In­de­pen­dent Elec­toral Com­mis­sions which it de­scribed as “the great­est demo­cratic fraud foisted on Nige­ria’s democ­racy.”

An­other rec­om­men­da­tion is the amend­ment of Sec­tion 162(5)-(7) of the con­sti­tu­tion to abol­ish the Joint State/lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Ac­count.

“Sec­tion 162(5)-(7) of the Con­sti­tu­tion should be amended to abol­ish the Joint State/lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Ac­count. Sec­tion 162(5)-(7) of the Con­sti­tu­tion should be fur­ther amended to pro­vide that any amount stand­ing to the credit of the lo­cal gov­ern­ment coun­cils in the Fed­er­a­tion Ac­count should be paid di­rectly to the var­i­ous lo­cal gov­ern­ments.

“Sec­tion 7 of the Con­sti­tu­tion of the Fed­eral Re­pub­lic of Nige­ria (as amended) re­lat­ing to the place of lo­cal gov­ern­ments as the third tier of gov­ern­ment should be amended to specif­i­cally guar­an­tee the ex­is­tence, es­tab­lish­ment, struc­ture, com­po­si­tion, fi­nance, func­tions and ten­ure of lo­cal gov­ern­ments un­der the Con­sti­tu­tion,” IPAC stated.

Ac­cord­ing to IPAC, the con­duct of LG elec­tions should be­come the re­spon­si­bil­ity of the In­de­pen­dent Na­tional Elec­toral Com­mis­sion and not SIECS.

IPAC added, “The cur­rent sys­tem en­cour­ages mas­sive rig­ging be­cause SIECS are un­der the whims and caprices of the state gov­ern­ments and the po­lit­i­cal party in power in each state across Nige­ria.”

•L-R: The Na­tional Chair­man, Peo­ples Demo­cratic Party, Mr Uche Se­con­dus; Na­tional Chair­man, the All Pro­gres­sives Congress, Mr Adams Osh­iom­hole; Publisher, Van­guard News­pa­pers, Mr Sam Amuka; a for­mer gov­er­nor of Anam­bra State, Mr Peter Obi; au­thor of the book, Mr Eric Osagie; Rivers State Gov­er­nor, Nye­son Wike; a for­mer Na­tional Chair­man of the APC, Chief John Odigie-oye­gun; book re­viewer, Mr Sam Omat­s­eye; and Capt. Hosa Okun­bor (retd.), dur­ing the pub­lic pre­sen­ta­tion of a book, ti­tled, ‘The Big In­ter­view’ in Abuja ...on Tues­day. Photo Olatunji Obasa

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