2019: UPP flays NASS on order of elections

– Press Release –

We commend very highly the proposed amendment of the laws guiding the

Order of Elections starting with the 2019 general election. The

political significance and the positive democratic implication of

conducting the presidential election last as proposed cannot be

over-emphasized.

Over the years political parties especially those in opposition have

persistently canvassed for the present order that is being proposed.

Each time the Electoral Act was subjected to amendment, political

parties always seized the opportunity to demand for this type of

amendment. It is common knowledge that any party that won the

presidential election since the commencement of the present democratic

dispensation in 1999 always benefited from the bandwagon effect of

winning overwhelmingly in subsequent elections. In all cases such

party ended up dominating the National Assembly, majority of the

States and the State Assemblies in Nigeria. In this way the opposition

political parties are weakened to the extent that the State Assemblies

and National Assembly never developed outside the whims and caprices

of the ruling political party and its executive arm. The Legislature

became more rubber stamp of the Executive arm of Government.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) with its overwhelming majority

turned down several demands for the reordering of the elections

schedule. The same scenario replicated itself, the moment the APC won

the presidential election with President Muhammadu Buhari as its

presidential candidate in 2015.

We are aware of the internal destabilization of the main fabric of the

APC which has paved the way for the successful review of the Order of

Elections especially now that most of the legislators are uncertain of

being renominated by the ruling party following their face-off with

both the presidency and their party leadership. If this is what it

will take for political parties to win election on the merit and

popularity of their candidates then our democracy and the Nigerian

people are the major beneficiaries.

We are satisfied that INEC has given an early assurance that it will

comply with the provisions of the law provided that the period

specified by the Constitution of Nigeria for such amendments to be

completed, is met.