At least 10 members of the Senate staged a walk-out on Wednesday in protest against the adoption of the report by the Senate and House of Representatives Joint Committee on the Amendment to the Electoral Act.
The protesting lawmakers, despite the adoption of the report by the Senate, insist on its reversal.
They alleged that the amendment was targeted at President Muhammadu Buhari, that, probably is why they wanted their election held first in 2019, before that of the state lawmakers and state governors.
The last to hold, according to them, should the the presidential election.
When the Chairman of the Senate Committee on the Independent National Electoral Commission, Senator Suleiman Nazif, presented the report at the plenary, Senate President, Bukola Saraki, put the adoption of the report to voice vote.
He said there was no need for debate on it as it was from a conference committee which had harmonised the versions of the two chambers.
After the vote, the ‘ayes’ had it and Mr Saraki ruled on it, an impromptu uproar began to ricochet across the chamber.
It could be recalled that in the first timetable released by INEC, Presidential and National Assembly elections are to hold first, while governorship and state assembly elections are to follow.
The House amended section 25 of the Principal Act and substituted it with a new section 25 (1).
According to the section, the elections shall be held in the following order: (a) National Assembly election (b) State Houses of Assembly and Governorship elections (c) Presidential election.
Similarly, section 87 was amended by adding a new section 87 (11) with a marginal note “time for primaries of political parties”.