Speaker of the 7th National Assembly, Rt Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal has urged Nigerians to be vehement in making their positions known towards ensuring a lasting free and fair election in the country.
Tambuwal who raised concern on the issue of proposed electronic transmission of votes before the National Assembly for deliberation noted that they should strive towards bequeathing lasting legacy of acceptable electoral processes for the future of this country’s democracy.
Reminding the two arms of the legislatures on the need to clearly note that what is on the table for now is not electronic voting but electronic transmission of votes, Tambuwal affirmed that, both international community, INEC as well as the civil society organizarions are all in support of the transmission.
He stressed further during the press conference at the Sokoto State Secretariat of NUJ, Tambuwal said, “My intervention was not a partisan one. It must be seen as a contribution from someone who has had varied experiences as a legislator, a former Speaker, a sitting Governor and one who has been involved in leadership of political patties”.
While reiterating that only credible , free and fair election will ensure that voters decide any electoral contest, Tambuwal used Edo and Ondo elections as case study, noting that,” the electronic transmission of votes cast from the unit level ensured that the voters wishes were respected hence PDP won in Edo and APC won in Ondo as a result.”
Reminding National Assembly members to look beyond immediate party interest, Tambuwal said today they might be in the ruling party and opposition tomorrow as well.
In his words ” We have seen many times where a person may be in the ruling party today and in the opposition tomorrow.
” We have also experienced a situation where party leaders would want to frustrate the reelection of a sitting member , even in the same political party,” Tambuwal said.
“What guarantees the reelection of a member of the National Assembly or indeed any other contestant should be his performance and appeal not the dictates of any godfather either as Governor , President or party leader or stakeholders.”
Disputing the position of some that internet penetration in all parts of Nigeria is not assured, Tambuwal said ” this is exactly why the bill should give INEC the prerogative of introducing electronic transmission of votes in any election.
” In any case, INEC has demonstrated and assured that it has the technology to transmit votes electronically even without the internet.”
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