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HOLD JONATHAN RESPONSIBLE IF 2011 POLLS FAIL – REP

By NBF News

Nigerians have been told to hold President Goodluck Jonathan responsible if the 2011 general elections failed to meet the expectations in terms of credibility and transparency.

Chairman of Committee on Information and National Orientation in the House of Representatives, Mr Aliyu Wadada said yesterday in a statement that the National Assembly had concluded its part to ensure that the conduct of the 2011 elections meets international standard.

He urged the people not to blame the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) if the conduct of the 2011 general elections was short of the standards prescribed by the international community.

Wadada accused the Executive of deliberate foot-dragging in assenting to the relevant bills saying that the House and the Senate had discharged their constitutional responsibility by passing the 2010 Electoral Bill and INEC supplementary budget. 'Contrary to the impression given by INEC on the passage of the electoral law and the supplementary bill for it to undertake voters' registration, the House of Representatives and indeed, the two chambers of the National Assembly have fully discharged their constitutional responsibility.

'If there is anything holding back the bills from becoming laws, it is the assent of Mr. President,' Wadada said.

He added that as a result of its commitment to ensuring that all democratic process were adhered to in the conduct of the 2011 elections, the House may reconvene to override the President on the bills, once the stipulated time expired.

INEC chairman, Prof Attahiru Jega had raised doubts on the conduct of the 2011 general elections, saying that its plans to deliver credible elections were being frustrated by the Presidency and the National Assembly.

While the National Assembly passed both the Electoral bill and the INEC supplementary bill some weeks back, the Presidency claimed that it only received clean copy of the bill last Monday.