PDP Chieftain Demands Constitution Amendment

A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and former Aviation Minister, Osita Chidoka, has requested that there should be an amendment to the Nigerian Constitution and other electoral laws to ensure that a presidential candidate must have over 50% of the total votes cast in an election to be fit for office.

He stated this on Wednesday during his appearance on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily, adding that there should be runoffs for presidential polls where no candidate scores over 50% of the total votes cast.

Chidoka stressed that in the last election, the votes which President Bola Tinubu, received put him in a “serious minority” which makes it difficult for him to push a “big agenda” like petrol subsidy removal and the unification of the foreign exchange windows.

He said, “Look at the reactions of Nigerians to the war in Niger. If you look at the reaction to fuel subsidy. If the people of Nigeria have confidence that this government has mass legitimacy, which brings me to a point, I think we need to amend our laws to make it that any presidential candidate who doesn’t make 50 plus 1 of the votes cast in an election should go for a runoff because the election of a President as 33% of the votes keeps the President in a serious minority that makes him difficult to push big agenda.”

The PDP veteran stated that he was in favour of eliminating petrol subsidies and floating the naira, but added that these measures needed to be designed to prevent “serious negative externalities” like skyrocketing food and transportation costs.

Additionally, the ex-minister claimed that before making the two important decisions he did, the President should have waited, assembled his cabinet, and conferred with them.

But according to him, the President’s 45 present ministry nominees lack credibility.

“If he (Tinubu) had had a cabinet. Sadly, the cabinet I see today does not inspire confidence. I don’t even know whether this cabinet will be able to advise him better than the decisions he had taken,” he said.

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