Finally, senate agrees with reps, approves conference committee report on electoral bill

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The senate has approved the conference committee report on the electoral act amendment bill.

The report was approved after Yahaya Abdullahi, senate leader, moved a motion on Tuesday.The senate and house of representatives passed different versions of the bill, and this led to the setting-up of a conference committee.In July, the senate empowered the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) to determine the electronic transmission of election results.

The provision caused an outrage, with many calling on the senate to follow the example of the house of representatives which adopted the use of technology “where practicable”.In the conference committee report, both chambers of the national assembly empowered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to determine the best mode to transmit election results.The electoral commission will now have to decide how to transmit election results — either electronically or manually.

Both chambers also approved that all political parties must use the direct primary mode in picking candidates.Once the house of representatives approves the report, a clean copy will be produced and sent to the president for assent by the clerk of the national assembly.

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