A new battle line appears to have been opened between the two presiding officers of the National Assembly and the Presidency over the new amendments to the 2010 Electoral Act.
The House of Representatives on Tuesday passed amendments to the 2010 Electoral Act with a striking amendment being the proposed change in the Order of Elections as contained in Section 25 of the Electoral
Contrary to the existing order in the said Section 25 of the 2010 law, the Reps changed the order and put the National Assembly elections first while taking the Presidential election to the last spot.
The decision is said to have jolted the Presidency which was said to have smelt a rat in the brewing development.
Sources in the polity confirmed to the Nigerian Tribune that some forces who had earlier marked Senate President Bukola Saraki out for removal wasted no time in adding Speaker Yakubu Dogara to the list of
those to be dealt with in the legislature.
Besides Saraki and Dogara, it was learnt that vocal lawmakers including Senator Shehu Sani, Dino Melaye, Isha Hamman Misau and Ben Murray Bruce have also been pencilled in for treatments that could see them lose their re-election bids.
A source in the know described the situation thus: “The handlers in the Presidency were seriously jolted at the decision of the House to amend sections of the Electoral Act and change the order of elections.
They see this as a direct attack on the Presidency especially the decision to place Presidential elections last on the order of elections.
“There is a clear directive to move against Speaker Dogara and add him to the list of those opposed to the system.
“The Presidency knows that the Senate will agree with the House to change that order of elections because the red chamber has already declared war on the executive. This new move by the House is meant to
portray the executive in bad light both nationally and in the international community.”
According to the source, if the presidency opposed the proposed amendment, it would be seen by international community as opposing free and fair elections and if it scales through it will signal to the
political class locally that the presidency has lost face in the polity.
“Either way it amounts to loss of face for the executive and that is why they are angry with Dogara on this matter,” the source further said.
It was further gathered that presidency handlers have looked through the situation in the ruling All Progressives Congress(APC) and identified only Senate President Bukola Saraki and a Governor of one
of the North West states as obstacles that could arise to the Buhari tendency in the party in the case the President abandons the second term bid.
“As for the North West Governor, he has been told by his other colleagues that it is better he faces a second term bid in his state so that he can make much impact and later launch out for the presidency. Others have also agreed to work with the Buhari tendency but Saraki remains the odd man. Now Dogara appears to be joining him,” another source said adding that strategic meetings which continue at the weekend will design ways to tackle the House of Reps helmsman,
while further deepening the Saraki must go initiative.