Former deputy governor of Plateau State and All Progressive Congress, APC chieftain, Dame Pauline Tallen, has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for refusing to append his assent on the Electoral Act bill.
Ms Tallen made the commendation on Saturday in Jos, soon after she was conferred with the 2018 ICONIC Female of the Year Award, by the Voice Out Vanguard, a pro-democracy youth organisation in the state.
According to her, Mr Buhari’s decision is in the best interest of free, fair, credible and confusion-free 2019 elections.
Represented by Shabul Mazadu, her media assistant, Ms Tallen advised the National Assembly not to muddle up things that could lead to crash programming of the forthcoming 2019 elections in the country.
She said: “As far as we are concerned, Mr President is trying to avoid anything that would distort electioneering and electoral processes as he has promised to conduct free and fair elections.
“These Nigerians that are trying to make a mountain out of the President’s refusal to assent to the electoral bill should know that any confusion during the 2019 elections can plunge the country into serious crisis,” she warned.
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The APC chieftain noted that considering that elections are just around the corner, when such bill is assented to, the time to purchase electronic machines, train personnel to put them into real practice and hoping to get perfect results is grossly short.
“Therefore, the time is too late for the electronic voting to be introduced, because going by the past elections in Nigeria, very soon INEC will start recruitment in about two months and weeks to the elections.”
“To buy the machines, install them and test them to ensure their effectiveness and even those people that would man the elections, one would just say the time is it too short for that to be done,” she added.
According to her, those people calling on the NASS, to override the President should have it at the back of their minds, that doing so is not in the best interest of the country.
“We cannot tell the National Assembly to override or not to override the President, as some people are saying, but they should know that if they (NASS) override him to go ahead and introduce the electronic voting, if it fails it will then not be the fault of the President rather it should be their fault.
Speaking on the award, Ms Tallen said she was extremely happy over the recognition, saying: “It is an encouragement that will spur me to do more of those good things.”
She said as an advocate of peaceful elections, she doesn’t subscribe to violence, urging Nigerians and the youth in particular to shun all forms of violence.