Senate Divides Over Amendment On Electronic Voting, Transmission Of Results

15 July 2021 By James Itodo….

Senate on Thursday at plenary went into division to vote on amendment to section 52(3) of the 2021 Electoral Act Amendment Bill presented for consideration.

The lawmakers had began the clause-by clause consideration of the recommendations of Its Committee on INEC on Electoral Act Amendment Bill 2021 when disagreement erupted among them.

Section 52(3) of the bill had prescribed that INEC may adopt electronic voting and transmission of result processes or any other method of voting in any election it conducts as it may deem fit.

The section which provided for INEC to determine electronic process of voting was however amended to empower the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) to determine the suitability of the network to conduct electronic election processes with approval of the National Assembly.

The amendment was sought by Senator Sabi Abdullahi representing Niger Notth while President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan passed the gravel in support of the amendment.

The approval of Senator Sabi’s amendment, however did not go down well with some senators, who were against the amendment to the section.

This, resulted in a roudy session in the chamber as senators engaged in uncomplimentry remarks against one another.

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan then called for a closed session, which lasted for almost 10 mins, given the uncomplimentary exchange of words amongst senators.

Sen.Enyinaya Abaribe after the end of the closed session, called for division, having cited order 73, which allows senators to contest the ruling of the President of the Senate.

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