The President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan, on Tuesday said the National Assembly would target a quick passage of the amendments to the Electoral Act.
Ahmad said this when he received a delegation of the European Union Elections Observers Mission in Nigeria led by Keitec Karlsen in his office.
He said, “We will be quick to address all the grey areas and come up with better inputs before the next general elections.”
He applauded the European Union Mission for the recommendations in its report of the last elections.
Lawan said, “We consider our elections of great importance; we have lessons to learn and we want our elections to be credible.”
He requested more collaboration with the European Union Mission, urging them to help the National Assembly.
He said the National Assembly had always supported the Independent National Electoral Commission, adding that the electoral umpire required more support and resources because the resources available were not enough for them.
Lawan added, “Our desire is that our electoral umpire continues to be independent and improve to perform the statutory functions creditably well.
“There will be the need for the EU to look for how it can support most of our committees. The present National Assembly, especially the Senate, will like to work with you in carrying out our mandate on oversight legislative in a very committed manner.”
Meanwhile, when the EU EOM team visited the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, they called on the National Assembly to begin work on implementing their recommendations.
Also, the Deputy Chief Observer, Hannah Roberts, said, “There are however still some shortcomings to work on.
“We have come to deliver our final report with 30 recommendations for reforms in the future so that better elections can be made in future. It is not practical to leave electoral reform till close to the elections, as there is no time for a proper implementation.
“Among the recommendations made, a lot were made last time; out of these, seven of the recommendations are critical. They are to ensure a more robust way to check the results of the polls, a stronger transparency in voting process, a better operational reform on the part of INEC.
“There is also the need for more security coordination between the different relevant security agencies, the involvement of women in the electoral process as Nigeria seems to be at the bottom in female participation in politics in Africa.
“Election tribunals should also cover election processes so that they can be adequately informed when handling petitions after the election process. And finally, to ensure the improvement of the process used to issue the licences to media covering election processes in order to get the required divergence.”
Gbajabiamila said Nigeria was desirous of getting its democratic process right, adding that the country was ready to follow best practices in its electoral processes.
He said, “We assure the EU of our readiness to work more closely to achieve the best results possible for the Nigerian people. We promise to ensure there remains a harmonious working relationship between Nigeria and the European Union.”