We Are Not Aware Of Any Court Judgement On Section 84(12) – NASS
Electoral Act: Senate not Aware of Court Judgment on Section 84 (12) – Senator Ajibola Basiru
The Senate said on Friday that it was not aware of any court judgment which struck out the controversial Section 84 (12) from the newly amended Electoral Act 2022.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Dr. Ajibola Basiru, stated this while responding to a question put to him on the matter by THISDAY in Abuja.
The Federal High Court sitting in Umuahia, the Abia State capital, had earlier on Friday, ordered that Section 84 (12) should be deleted from the newly amended Electoral Act 2022.
President Muhammadu Buhari had penultimate week, written to the National Assembly, urging it to delete the controversial section by a way of amendment.
The two chambers of the federal parliament refused the president’s request by voting against it.
However, the court in a judgment delivered by Justice Evelyn Anyadike, held that the section was unconstitutional, invalid, illegal, null, void and of no effect whatsoever.
The judge said it ought to be struck down as it could not stand since, “it is in violation of the clear provisions of the constitution”.
The Senate spokesperson insisted that he would not react to a story read in the media.
Basiru said he would only react when a copy of the verdict is served on the National Assembly.
The senator said: “I’m not aware of the suit and whether the National Assembly was a party or was served and/or represented.
“I have also not seen or read the judgment or whether the National Assembly has been served with the judgment or any order of court.
“I cannot react to newspaper reports of court judgment without seeing the actual court judgment.”
President Buhari had, while signing the amended Electoral Act, urged the National Assembly to delete the provision.
He said it violated the constitution and breached the rights of government appointees.
The president thereafter wrote a letter to both chambers of the National Assembly seeking an amendment by way of deleting the provision.
The proposed amendment was rejected in plenary by the two chambers.
Reps not served notice as party to court case on electoral act – Hon. Benjamin Kalu
The house of representatives says it was not served a notice as being a party to a court case on the Electoral Act 2022.
Benjamin Kalu, spokesperson of the house, said this on Friday while addressing journalists.
On Friday, a Federal High Court in Umuahia, Abia state, ordered the Attorney-General of the Federation to delete section 84 (12) of the amended electoral act.
Evelyn Anyadike, the presiding judge, held that the section was unconstitutional, invalid, illegal, null, void and cannot stand.
Anyadike ruled that sections 66(1)(f), 107(1)(f), 137(1)(f) and 182(1)(f) of the 1999 constitution already stipulated that appointees of government seeking to contest elections were only to resign at least 30 days to the date of the election.
The judge said any other law that mandated such appointees to resign or leave office at any time before that was unconstitutional.
President Muhammadu Buhari had assented to the electoral act amendment bill on February 25.
He, however, asked the national assembly to expunge section 84 (12) of the act, which reads: “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.”
Buhari had said the section disenfranchises serving political officers.
However, the senate rejected the president’s request to amend the clause in the electoral act, while the house of representatives had yet to take a decision on it.
Following the senate’s rejection, the AGF had said the federal government will consider all other options available before taking a position on the matter.
Speaking on the decision of the court, Kalu said the lower legislative chamber is also yet to receive the certified true copy of the judgment.
“The house of representatives was not aware of this legal matter, was not served and is still unaware whether we were necessary party to this matter or not,” he said.
Source:- The Cable