The Nigerian Senate has disclosed its next move of drastically reducing the number of political parties taking part in elections in the country.
The country currently has 91 registered political parties and would be reduced to five through legislation.
The upper chamber made this known on yesterday, October 9 during a meeting with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) boards led by the commission chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu.
The Senate, however, expressed its displeasure with a large number of political parties having candidates ahead of the forthcoming governorship elections set to hold in Kogi and Bayelsa states.
Ike Ekweremadu, the immediate past deputy senate president and former Enugu West senator under the People’s Democratic Party, while speaking at the meeting, note that the huge number of political parties that take part in elections was against the Electoral Act as amended.
He added that base on the Electoral Act jurisdiction, any political party that couldn’t win a seat in the general elections should be deregistered.
Supporting his view, the Senate committee chairman on INEC, Senator Kabiru Gaya for APC Kano South said, “any political party that fails to perform should not be included on the ballot.”
According to the electoral act, as amended, it has barred the political parties that failed to perform well at the just concluded general election from participating.
Therefore, there’s a need to act on the amended constitution so as to drastically reduced the number of political parties from 91 to a maximum of 5.
He added that his committee is committed to bringing down the number of political parties to save wastage of taxpayer money continually.
In response to the Senate decision, the INEC chairman said, “we’re on the verge of acting towards deregistering a large number of political parties on the basis of pending electoral litigations which might abuse its judgement.”
Professor Mahmood Yakubu told the senators that the commission had deregistered some political parties base on the amended electoral act, but many of them said the electoral act has no superiority over the constitution.