By Ibrahim Shehu FRCN Abuja
The House of Representatives says it will address the refusal of President Muhammadu Buhari to assent to the 2021 Electoral Act in January.
Speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila, disclosed this in a speech to mark the adjournment of the House for the Christmas and New Year break.
President Buhari in a letter earlier read at the plenary withheld assent to the bill, citing the cost of conducting direct primary elections, security challenges, and possible manipulation of electoral processes by political actors as reasons.
Mr Gbajabiamila explained that time was short to address the sensitive issue at hand in haste because members were set to proceed on break and other important bills must be passed such as the 2022 Appropriation Bill and the Finance Bill.
The Speaker however noted that the new bill introduced several innovations, besides direct primaries, to help advance the country’s democracy.
Mr Gbajabiamila disclosed the plan of the legislature to consider the merging of many Ministries, Departments, and Agencies of the Federal Government with overlapping functions, to help address the increasing inadequacy of budgeting as well as reforming the envelope budgeting system currently being operated