The National Assembly has continued to receive backlash over its failure to include the electronic transmission of election results in the passed Electoral Amendment Act Bill.
DAILY POST recalls that both the Senate and House of Representatives last week passed the Electoral Amendment Act, but expunged the electronic transmission of election results.
In his reaction, the Senator representing Plateau North, Istifanus Gyang, described the refusal by the All Progressives Congress Senators to admit
electronic transmission of election results in the Electoral Act Amendment Bill as scoring an own goal.
The lawmaker also said their action has put them on the wrong side of history, as they have denied the nation an opportunity to “sanitise and bestow credibility on the electoral process”.
Gyang however said, himself along with PDP Senators with the exception of only two, voted in favour of the above provision which clearly supports “electronic voting and electronic transfer of election results. Senators of the APC opposed and voted against the recommendation of the committee as contained in Sec 52(3) of the report”.
The lawmaker, who is the Deputy Chairman Senate Committee on Defence, further stated that, “The refusal of the APC Senators to pass the provision of Section 52(3) was an own goal which has put them on the wrong side of history and denied the country an opportunity to sanitize and bestow credibility on the electoral process”.
Also speaking, Comrade Japhet Philip La’abes, a civil society activist, said, “This decision will end in the annals of eternal infamy.”
He said, “It is quite shameful that legislators who should know better have chosen to circumvent the principles and letters of democracy of which they are major beneficiaries.
“This level of impunity, rascality and corruption by these doomsday lawmakers must be resisted headlong by the Nigerian people.
“How can lawmakers make laws that are inconsistent with the will of the people and the constitution they have sworn to protect?
“Nigerians must rise up to this challenge. If we want good governance, we must be seen to be active participants in the democratic process. Let’s say no to clueless and self centered leaders”, he admonished.
In his reaction, a civil society practitioner, Comrade Pwakim Jacob Choji, said, “It just shows the state of affairs in the country. It confirms our fears about the current occupants of the National Assembly.
“The names of those who voted against electronic transmission should be placed in the hall of shame so that generations unborn should know those who missed the opportunity to better the relevance of their opinions as enshrined in the election.
“Remember that, the electoral transmission would have just been one issue done to leave the next assembly with the burden of addressing other issues.
“However, even if they had approved the e-transmission, as far as the onus still remains on the president to assent to it, that bill wouldn’t have seen the light of day”, he maintained.
According to him,”We need to get to a level that joint resolutions of the two houses should be a law rather than to always run to the president whose singular power can veto the resolution of 469 elected representatives”.
Comrade Gad Peter, a civil society activist, while reacting to the action of the National Assembly, said, “Some members of the National Assembly cannot think for themselves, don’t consult those that send them there, and only follow the instructions of their party, which most often is anti people.
Peter said, “Their recent decision on Electronic Transmission of Result was a very poor decision and non progressive.
“INEC had said they have the capacity, ‘We have the capacity for electronic transmission of results, we have uploaded results from very remote areas, even from areas where you have to use human carriers to access’.
“Nigerians should demand for the transmission of the results”.