Can PDP Senators Override Buhari's Veto On Electoral Act?
Senators on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are currently shopping for the required numbers to override President Muhammadu Buhari's veto of the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill.
Investigations by Bounce News revealed that although the party currently lacks the mandatory two-thirds of senators to override the President's veto, they are lobbying lawmakers from other political parties to their side.
Section 58 (5) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) provides that: "Where the President withholds his assent and the bill is again passed by each House by two-thirds majority, the bill shall become law and the assent of the President shall not be required".
The import of this constitutional provision is that 73 senators in the Senate and 240 lawmakers in the House of Representatives are needed to override the president's veto.
With 48 senators, PDP will need additional 25 lawmakers from other political parties to join in.
At the moment, the 109-member Senate consists of six different political parties with the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the majority with 56.
Others are; two African Democratic Congress (ADC) senators, one member each from All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) and Social Democratic Party (SDP).
A PDP senator who spoke to Bounce News revealed that PDP Senate Caucus is already in talks with aggrieved APC senators, especially those who lost return tickets in the last National Assembly primaries.
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"We are already talking to some of them (APC senators). As of now, only one of them from Ogun State has given us his commitment. Most of them bluntly told us that doing so would be tantamount to anti-party activity.
"But let's see how it goes. We are still making overtures to them, hoping that they would change their hard positions and join us," the PDP senator who did not want his name mentioned, said.
He, however, admitted that this would be a tall order, because the Red Chamber is already divided along party lines.
Some APC senators including Senate Leader, Senator Ahmad Lawan, Ovie Omo-Agege, Bukar Abba Ibrahim, Solomon Adeola have already vowed to block any attempt by PDP lawmakers to override the President's veto.
Recall that President Buhari had on December 7 declined assent to the Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill for the fourth time.
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