The Senate President, Dr Ahmad Lawan on Thursday asked the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC to consider all issues raised by the public during the just-concluded presidential and National Assembly elections in order to have smooth conduct of the forthcoming governorship and state Houses of Assembly elections.
The electoral umpire has fixed March 11, 2023, for the governorship and state Houses of Assembly elections having conducted the presidential and National Assembly polls on February 25.
Lawan, who spoke while announcing the suspension of plenary till March 14 to enable senators to participate in the campaigns and elections, said: “I think INEC should consider looking into issues raised by the public. INEC should be strictly guided by the Constitution and the Electoral Act and their guidelines and regulations.”
He further said: “Nigerians should support INEC in whatever way they can so that it conducts the governorship and states assembly elections successfully.
“This is because that is what we all expect and that is what we need as a democracy. We will be out of this place for the next two weeks and come back and continue our legislative functions.”
Thanking the senators for “doing everything possible to make this Ninth Senate a success,” he said: “We have finished this legislative week. The idea of reconvening immediately after the presidential and National Assembly elections was to ensure that we are abreast with the whole situation that happened during the election and are happening now.
“This is so that we remain part and parcel of the solution where necessary and we have achieved that and we have also in the process done other legislative work.”
While announcing an adjournment, the Senate President informed that seven serving senators are contesting in the governorship election.
Those he listed as contesting on the platform of the APC include Deputy Senate President Ovie Omo-Agege (Delta), Aishatu Binani (Adamawa), Uba Sani (Kaduna), Emmanuel Bwacha (Taraba) and Teslim Folarin (Oyo). Others are Haliru Jika of the New Nigeria Peoples Party, NNPP and Sandy Onor of the Peoples Democratic Party, respectively candidates in Bauchi and Cross River states.
“We wish all our colleagues contesting and those of us who are not running should all go and participate in the processes because we will be able to observe first-hand, some of the issues that may arise.
“During the Presidential and National Assembly election on a general note, everything went on fine, but still we have one or two complaints coming from the public,” the Senate President said.