OrderPaperToday –The Senate has empowered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to determine the procedure for the transmission of election results during the general elections. 

This was just as it approved direct primaries for aspirants to all elective positions.  

The Senate on Tuesday made the amendments to some clauses of the Electoral Act (Repeal and Re-enactment) Bill 2021, passed on July 15, 2021. The red chamber explained that the decision to subject the amended clauses of the bill to re-committal was reached after critical examination by the Senate Committee on INEC.

Additionally, the Senator Kabiru Gaya-led Committee observed some fundamental issues that required fresh legislative action in the bill. Accordingly, the lawmakers raised a motion for re-committal and re-amended certain aspects of the bill in Clauses 43, 52, 63 and 87, respectively. 

The Senate in Clause 52 of the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill passed almost three months ago had approved that “the Commission (INEC) may consider the electronic transmission of election results. This is provided that the national coverage is adjudged to be adequate and secure by the National Communications Commission and approved by the National Assembly.”

However, on Tuesday, it amended the clause when the bill was subjected to re-committal to provide that, “subject to section 63 of this bill, voting at an election and transmission of results under this bill shall be in accordance with the procedure determined by the Commission.”

Furthermore, the Senate also approved Clause 87 to read, “a political party seeking to nominate candidates for elections under this bill shall hold direct primaries for aspirants to all elective positions, which shall be monitored by the Commission.”

Thus, members of the Conference Committee on the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill 2021 are expected to meet with their counterparts in the House of Representatives to harmonise the two versions passed by both chambers.

Courtesy: Office of President of the Senate 

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