Electoral Act: Senate Vows To Appeal Judgment Against S-84
—Section 84(12) of the Electoral Act 2022 states that “No political appointee at any level shall be 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.”
Nigeria’s Senate has resolved to appeal last week Friday’s judgment by a Federal High Court in Umuahia, nullifying the provision of Section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act 2022.
That section (section 84 (12)) of the Electoral Act 2022 states that “No political appointee at any level shall be 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.”
The upper chamber’s (Senate’s) resolution was reached during plenary on Wednesday, following the consideration of a motion entitled, “urgent need to appeal the judgment of the Federal High Court, Umuahia, on Suit No.: FHC/UM/CS/26/2022 on Section 84(12) of the Electoral Act 2022.”
The motion was sponsored by Senator George Thompson Sekibo (Rivers East) and co-sponsored by 79 other Senators.
Sekibo, in his presentation, drew the attention of his colleagues to the judgment of the Federal High Court in Umuahia, Abia State, in a suit marked FHC/MU/SC/26/2022.
The judgement faulted the provision of Section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act 2022 and declared it unconstitutional, invalid, illegal, null, void and of no effect.
The lawmaker argued that the Judge in his ruling said that Section 84 (12) of the Electoral Act 2022 was inconsistent with Sections 66 (1)(f), 107(1)(f), 137(1)(g) and 182 (1)(c) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.
He noted further that Section 4(1)(2) and (3) of the 1999 Constitution as amended vested the power of lawmaking for the Federal Republic of Nigeria on the National Assembly.
He argued that in furtherance to the powers vested in the National Assembly, the 1999 Constitution under the roles of the Executive in Item D that deals with political parties in Section 228(a)(b) and (c) confers more powers on the National Assembly, more particularly on political parties and effective management of the electoral process by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
He noted that the Electoral Act 2022 enacted by the National Assembly followed due process, adding that Section 84 (12) of the Act exclusively refers to nomination, conventions and congresses, call for candidate selection and not participation in the general election which Sections 66 (1)(f),137(1)(g) and 182(1)(g) referred to.
The Senate, accordingly, resolved to appeal the judgment in suit FHC/MU/SC/26/2022 for the court to set aside the judgment, alleging that same was reached without due consideration of the constitutional interpretation in Section 318 of the 1999 Constitution as amended.