The founding Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Chief Olusegun Osoba, has urged the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd), to sign the 2010 Electoral Act (amendment) Bill 2021, into law.
He supported the direct primary method as a means of selecting candidates of all political parties as contained in the newly passed law.
The former Ogun State Governor stated this in London when a delegation of senators across political party lines and geopolitical zones of Nigeria visited him on Friday. The lawmakers were in London to wish Osoba, a speedy recovery from a recent knee surgery.
Osoba appealed to Buhari to sign the amended Electoral Act because he, (the president) was a product of direct primary.
The delegation comprises; Senator Solomon Adeola (APC, Lagos West), Senator Kashim Shetima (APC, Borno Central), Senator Isah Jubril(APC, Kogi East), Senator Micheal Nnachi(PDP, Ebonyi South), Senator Ayo Akinyelure (PDP, Ondo Central), and Senator Gershon Bassey(PDP, Cross River South).
Others are, Senator Yusuf Abubakar Yusuf (APC, Taraba Central), Senator Sadiq Sulaiman Umar(APC, Kwara North), Senator Tokunbo Abiru(APC, Lagos East) Senator Bashiru Ajibola(APC, Osun Central) and Senator Hassan Mohamed Gusau(APC, Zamfara Central).
Osoba said, “I have a feeling he (Buhari), will sign it. The president himself is a product of direct primary. He submitted himself to direct primary in 2019 throughout the country and heaven did not fall.
“After he subjected himself to direct primary throughout Nigeria in all the wards, he also subjected himself to a National Convention to ratify his election at the primary.
“Quote me, I had cause to tell him at our national caucus during Edo election issue that ‘Mr President, if you can subject yourself to direct primary and national convention, I do not see why anybody should be afraid of direct primary.’
“I said this to him and we must be honest when we are talking to our leaders. That is why I believe that the President been a product of direct primary will sign the law for direct primary.”
Adeola, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Finance said members of the Senate were in London and decided to pay Osoba, a get well quick visit.
The Senator said Osoba’s wealth of experience was needed as Nigeria forge ahead in difficult times.
He said, ” It is gratifying to see that he (Osoba) is recovering fast from his surgery. This is evident as he personally received us at the door. From the first floor and going back up with us to the sitting room upstairs.”
Shetimma who spoke on behalf of other senators stated that they came as Nigerians devoid of any political party or regional colouration to wish Osoba well as an elder statesman at 82.
Shettima said Osoba had contributed to the nation through journalism and service in government while some of the senators were still growing up.
He said that the nation still needed his wealth of experience in forging ahead in these times.
Shettima said, “As Senators of the Federal Republic, all of us are interested in the growth and progress of our nation. We did not come here for partisan consideration but to seek wisdom from an elder statesman that had contributed positively to the growth of the nation and still willing to do more even in advanced age.”