Home Local News Electoral bill: National Assembly carpets Malami over ‘self-interest’ comment

Electoral bill: National Assembly carpets Malami over ‘self-interest’ comment


The National Assembly, on Thursday, dismissed a threat by the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), that he would oppose the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, if it was based on selfish interest.

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Senator Ajibola Basiru, specifically dismissed Malami as a political appointee, who could not speak for the President, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on institutional matters like the bill.

Basiru was reacting to a recent interview granted by Malami in which the minister said Buhari would not assent to the reworked bill, if its provisions were considered to be of selfish interest.

The AGF had hinted that Buhari might withhold assent from the bill, if it was considered to have proposed laws based on personal interests.

According to the minister, the bill, which the National Assembly transmitted to the Presidency the second time on Monday last week, just got to him on Monday for legal advice.

When asked if he would advise the President to reject the amended bill if he was not satisfied with the new version, Malami said, “Certainly, if I am not satisfied and if I am of the opinion that it is against the public interest, the national interest; and then against the dictates of democratic process, I would advise accordingly.

“But then, one thing I can tell you is that we are all interested in leaving behind a legacy of a lasting democracy; a democracy that indeed accommodates the collective interest of the Nigerian state, and eventually advances the national interest, national development and deepens the democratic process.

“So, with these considerations associated with deepening democracy; with the considerations associated with the national and public interest, we will certainly do whatever it takes to move democracy to the next level.”

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