President Muhammadu Buhari is scared that giving assent to the Electoral Act Amendment Bill may cause his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), to lose in the 2023 general election, according to Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike.
According to a statement signed by his spokesperson Kelvin Ebiri, Governor Wike made the statement at the inauguration of lecture halls, laboratories, and offices of the Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences of the Bayelsa Medical University in Yenagoa on Saturday.
The inclusion of mandatory electronic transmission of electoral results in the Electoral Act Amendment Bill, according to the Governor, is now the APC’s greatest worry.
“They are afraid that if INEC in 2023 transmits election results electronically that is the end of them, because they know they will fail,” he said.
Governor Wike wondered why the APC-controlled Federal Government always seeks excuses to justify their unwillingness to sign into law what will advance the country’s electoral process.
“Every time this government, this party will find an excuse of not signing an Electoral Act. In 2018 to 2019 when they inserted the card reader in the Electoral Act Amendment Bill, Mr President said no, it is too early, I will not sign because they know if they had inserted it (card reader) in 2019 election it would have been difficult for APC to have won,” he said.
“Now, we are in 2022, going for 2023, National Assembly in their wisdom said there must be direct primaries by all the parties, Mr President came and said no, put options. National Assembly in their wisdom has amended the bill and agreed to what Mr President said. Now again, Mr President said I’m in dilemma, I’m consulting. What is the consultation? That there is a clause that says if a minister or a commissioner want to run for election you have to resign, that is why up till now Mr President cannot assent to the Electoral Act Amendment Bill.”