– Vices who succeed their principals can not be re-elected more than once as Buhari consent a bill that prohibits such.

– Reduced by-elections duration from 7 to 21 days.

The Nigerian President, Gen. Mohammadu Buhari, Rtd., has approved a bill that will prohibit the vice-presidents and deputy governors who completed the tenure of their principal officers from contesting for the seat more than once.

President Buhari signed this bill into law as part of the 3 new bills signed on Friday by the presidency and these laws make cogent changes to pre and post election matters.

Speaking on the new bills, the Senior Special Assistant to President Buhari on National Assembly matters, Ita Enang, said the first act which deals with pre-election matters, has reduced its date and time of determining pre-election matters.

However, Etang failed to state the number of days in the new act but he did make clarifications that the number of days to resolve such has been reduced.

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“There is another of the act which has come into force today is Constitution amendment number 21 which relates to the determination of pre-election matters. It has reduced the date and time of determining pre-election matters to ensure that pre-eletion matters in court do not get into the time of the elections and do not pend thereafter. The relevant sections of the Constitution had also been amended by this act, therefore amending the Constitution.”

Furthermore, he said the amendment of bill number 16 which has been assented by the president, now prevents vice-presidents/deputy governors who succeeds and complete the tenure of the president/governor from seeking re-election more than once.

Etang clarified that the intention of the new act is to see to it that no one takes the oath of office more than twice, as they will have to take a oath of office before being confirmed the president/governor.

Before this assent, such vice presidents or deputy governors, after completion of their predecessors’ term can run for office on another two terms.

A valid example was that of former President, Goodluck Jonathan who took over from Late President Umaru Musa Yar’ Adua in 2010, completed his predecessor’s tenure and seek re-election in 2011, which he won and again in 2015.

The new law is however said to be the solution and a permanent end to this.

The SSA on National Assembly matters also announced an alteration to the law governing the conduct of bye-elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

He said INEC will now have up to 21 days to conduct bye-elections instead of seven.

“The other amendment is Bill number 9 now an act which gives the Independent National Electoral Commission sufficient time to conduct bye elections. It has increased the number from seven to 21 days and generally widened the latitude of the Independent National Electoral Commission to handle election matters upon vacancy occurring.

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“Therefore these four bills adding to the Not Too Young To Run Act have now been assented by Mr. President and have now become laws. Then the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria of 1999 as amended are hereby further amended by the assent of Mr. President to these bills today.

“This allows the State Houses of Assembly to operate like the National Assembly does because the National Assembly does not get its budget from the Executive,” he added.

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