By Christiana Ekpa
In view of the provisions of the new Electoral bill passed by the House of Representatives on Wednesday, any elective political office holder sacked by Election Tribunal shall remain in office and enjoy all accrued benefits until the determination of Appeal and finally determined by the Supreme Court.
The amendment was contained in section 143 of the bill.
According to the explanatory memorandum of bill, the legislation seeks to amend the electoral act No. 6, 2010 to make provisions for restriction of the qualification for elective office to relevant provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).
It also provides for the use of card readers and other technological devices in elections and political party, to provide a timeline for the submission of list of candidates, criteria for substitution of candidates, as well as limit of campaign expenses.
Similarly, the bill address issues bordering on omission of names of candidates or logo of political parties during election.
The bill also provides, in section 140, that any electoral officer who omits party names or logo, leading to postponement of election, shall be liable to an offence on conviction to a N2 million fine or 2 years imprisonment or both.
The House had, during the debate on the motion sponsored by Emmanuel Orker-Jev (PDP-Benue), resolved to rescind its earlier decision on clauses 1 to 26 of the bill, which was considered on Wednesday, 17th October, 2018, and deferred further consideration of the remaining clauses of the bill.
The motion was adopted in pursuant to Order One, Rule 1(2) and Order Nine Rule 1(6) of the Standing Order of the House.
According to him, certain new matters considered by the House are pertinent to the electoral process to be captured in the bill to ensure transparent and credible 2019 elections.
Following the adoption of the Senate version, the Clerk of National Assembly (CNA) is to transmit the bill to the Presidency for assent.