Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, on Wednesday said there is no battle between federal lawmakers and governors over the Electoral Act Amendment Bill.
President Muhammadu Buhari had on Tuesday written to the National Assembly refusing to assent to the bill, citing security concerns and the cost of adopting direct primary for political parties.
Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Umahi commended President Buhari for not signing the bill.
“There is no battle between the legislators and the governors. The party politics and administration are quite clear in the various political parties,” he said.
“I will rather congratulate Mr President for not assenting to the bill. I will also commend the legislators very well because they did very thorough work with the issue of the electronic transmission.”
Despite commending the lawmakers for efforts taken on the bill, the governor argued that the major problem with the document is the direct primary clause.
According to him, people think the issue is an altercation between federal lawmakers and their respective state governors.
When asked if governors were hijacking the party in their states, Umahi denied it.
He specifically debunked the claim made by former Kebbi State Governor, Senator Adamu Aliero, that governors were hijacking the political party structure in their domains.
The Ebonyi Governor explained that since the governors are at home with members of the party, some aggrieved person may think they are hijacking the party structure.
“When people say direct primary is the only way of giving the party back to the people, I just laugh. There is no governor that doesn’t have at least hundreds of government officials in each of the wards.
“There is no governor that is not the one, who through contributions from friends, is paying the salaries of party officials. The governors are the ones keeping the party alive in the various wards so these are the commitments of governors that seem as if they are hijacking the party,” he added.