The majority leader in the House of Representatives, Honourable Ado Doguwa, on Friday suggested his colleagues from the Peoples Democratic Party are biased about issues surrounding the electronic transmission of electoral results because they do not understand the provisions of the amendment.
The House was thrown into disarray on Thursday as members debated section 52(2) of the electoral amendment act bill, which deals with electronic transmission.
On Friday, PDP lawmakers walked out of a session after presiding officer Deputy Speaker Ahmed Wase insisted that section 52(2) had been carried.
Speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Hon. Doguwa, a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) said the PDP lawmakers were being over-exuberant and desperate.
He argued that the provisions of the electoral amendment act bill, as passed by the House on Friday, allowed INEC to determine whether it would employ electronic voting or not.
APC Senators on Thursday had forced through a version of the bill at the Senate that constrained INEC to seek permission from the Nigerian Communications Commission and the National Assembly before employing electronic voting in any part of the country.
“I don’t know what version the Senate has, but in the House of Representatives where I serve as the leader, our provisions in respect to section 52(2) is that voting at an election under this act shall be in accordance with the procedure determined by the Independent National Electoral Commission,” Hon. Doguwa said.
“This goes to prove to you that the House of Representatives is working in tandem with the constitution. We said voting at an election and transmission of results under this bill shall be in accordance with the procedure determined by the commission.
“Whether by electronic, manual, or any other technological device, that is left for INEC to determine.”
“The so-called walking out of the PDP members was unfounded and unnecessary because the arguments they came out to protect are already contained in the bill.”
However, Hon. Doguwa said it was not a problem if his party, the APC, was against electronic transmission.
“What’s wrong with not wanting electronic transmission of results? We have over 49.3 percent of the Nigerian population not covered by network and that would amount to absolute disenfranchisement, so it is a political matter,” he said.