By Andrew Oota
The senator Sunday Karim bill for an Act to amend the Electoral Act, 2022 to allow political parties nominate and replace validly elected serving lawmakers in the event of death , resignation or vacancy without primaries was thrown out by the Senate .
The bill specifically sought to allow political parties to nominate rather than elect to replace any duly elected serving members of the National and State Assemblies who loses his seat in the event of resignation, death or vacancy.
In his submission, Senator Sunday Karimi (Kogi West) said the purpose and intent of the bill is to save the nation from unnecessary spending of resources in the conduct of elections to replace vacant seat in the National and State Assemblies.
“When a member resigns or dies, the party should nominate a replacement without having to conduct elections. Why are we wasting money in conducting elections, when such can be deployed into infrastructural development?”
While seconding the bill, Senator Joel Onowakpo Thomas (Delta South) urged the Senate to read the bill for the second time.
However, Senator Suleiman Abdulrahman (Kano South) argued that passing the bill would deny the people their right to choose who represents them at National and State Assemblies.
He noted that the system of government that Nigeria is operating allows the people to choose who they want, stressing that it would be out of place for party leaders to hand-pick who represents the people.
When the bill was thrown to voice votes, with the Senate President Godswill Akpabio asking if the bill be read.
However, the “Nay” was overwhelmingly louder, which saw the failure of the bill to advance.