The Nigerian Senate has passed the harmonized version of the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, 2021.
The bill was passed on Tuesday November 9, following the resumption of plenary by members of the National Assembly after a 3-weeks recess and the harmonization of the bill by the Senate and the House of Representatives.
Before the bill was passed, the senate had set-up a 7-man conference committee to meet with members of the House of Representatives Conference Committee to harmonise the differences in the Senate and House versions of the Electoral Act Amendment Bill.
The constitution of the conference committee by both chambers of the national assembly became necessary following the minor differences in the passed bills by both sides, especially with respect to the mode of operation of electronic transmission of election results and the powers of the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC).
Presenting a report on the harmonized version of the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, 2021, Senate Leader, Yahaya Abdullahi, who chaired the Conference Committee in the Senate said if the bill is assented to by the President, it would regulate the conduct of Federal, State and Area Councils in the Federal Capital Territory Elections.
He added that they considered and adopted twenty-one clauses in the bill. Abdullahi said;
“It is imperative to point out that with the successful harmonization of this bill, a process that started from the 7th Assembly through to the 8th National Assembly has now been completed by the 9th National Assembly.
“The bill is now ready for passage and Presidential assent.
“I am happy to state that most of what we call “citizens top priorities” on the Electoral Act Amendment, including the use of technology have been addressed by the Electoral Bill, 2021”
Shortly after the Senate passed the bill, the house of representatives approved the conference committee report on the electoral act amendment bill.
Now that both chambers of the national assembly have approved the report, a copy will be produced by the clerk of the national assembly and sent to the president for assent.