President Muhammadu Buhari will approve the long-awaited Electoral Act Amendment Bill 2021 tomorrow.
It was revealed that he will perform the act at noon, this will put end to speculations that the President may withhold assent again.
The National Assembly submitted the bill to him for the second time on January 31 after reviewing it.
The President has a 30-day time frame within which to either assent or withhold assent.
Sources disclosed that arrangements have been concluded for the signing.
“All these anxieties will disappear by Friday afternoon. He will be signing the bill around noon of that day.
“I believe he has taken his time so that the Act can be as unassailable as possible,” a source said.
President Buhari quoted the cost of conducting direct primary elections, security issues and possible manipulation of electoral processes as part of his reasons for withholding assent last November.
The Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP) stated that there was pressure on the President not to approve the Bill.
In a communique by its Secretary-General, Chief Willy Ezugwu, the group said: “Electronic transmission of election results was the reason the bill was returned to the National Assembly, not about the mode of election at party primaries as we were told.
“Secondly, we have discovered another reason the APC and their allies are now putting pressure on President Buhari not to sign the Electoral Act as re-amended in line with President Buhari’s demands.
“The APC finds clause 84 in the amendment unfavorable to the party. According to Clause 84 of the transmitted bill, ‘No political appointee at any level shall be a voting delegate or be voted for at the convention or congress of any political party for the purpose of the nomination of candidates for any election’.
“The implication is that all political appointees in President Buhari’s government would no longer be eligible, either as voting delegates or aspirants during the conventions or congresses of their political parties.”
But, Chairman, House Committee on Defense, Babajimi Benson, stated that the controversial Clause 84 (10) only seeks to create a level ground for all aspirants.
He said the clause does not demand appointees to resign before participating in conventions and congresses.
“Even if it does prevent political office holders from running, there’s a provision in the constitution that protects them,” the lawmaker added.
Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodimma, portrayed as unnecessary the worries shown by some Nigerians over the perceived delay.
He informed reporters: “To give Nigerians the best, the President has to study the Amended Act before signing it into law.
“If in the process he discovers things in the Act that are not in the interest of the people of Nigeria he has the constitutional mandate to move it back to the National Assembly for corrections before his assent.”