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PDP, Irresponsible Manipulation Of Facts And The Suspended INEC Officials

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) in the State of Osun has called on
the Independent National Electoral Commission to immediately clear the
air on information given to the public by the Peoples Democratic Party
(PDP) alleging that two of its staff have been suspended and are under
investigation for manipulating the election result from two local
governments to favour the APC.
It is unfortunate that the Peoples Democratic Party handlers have gone
to town manipulating facts and placing their offences on their intended
victim, the All Progressives Congress.
It is on record that on 8 August, 2014, vigilant youths arrested a
truck-full of ballot papers to be used for the gubernatorial election on
9 August, 2014 and this was widely reported. The two persons in charge
of the vehicle who were arrested were the Electoral Officer of Obokun
Local Government in Osun State, Segun Eshilokun and one Ismaila Taofik
who were in possession of the electoral materials before INEC started
the distribution of materials. The two culprits were handed over to the
police and were taken to the State CID in Osogbo. Later, the two of them
were released to one Oladipo Oladapo, a PDP chieftain from Ile-Ife
without any charge brought against them. The order to release them was
simply said to have come ‘from above’. It was pursuant to this that
we wrote a petition to INEC for the matter to be duly investigated and
the culprits brought to book.
Furthermore, the second INEC official who has just been suspended was
the Electoral Officer for Osogbo Local Government, a card-carrying
member of the PDP. The suspension was pursuant to our petition
complaining of several malpractices against this individual who connived
to manipulate the election in favour of PDP on the 9th of August, 2014
when he released only 64 identification tags to APC polling agents out
of a total of 227 that was due to be given to our agents. The
implication was that APC agents were denied access to their polling
units until the accreditation process was over and, if not for prompt
intervention by Ambassador Wali, the INEC National Commissioner in
charge, APC agents would have been completely excluded from most polling
units in Osogbo Local Government.
Later in the day after the conclusion of the election, the same
Electoral Officer for Osogbo Local Government refused to produce the
Form EC8C customized for Osogbo Local Government and in which the
collated results of the various Wards in Osogbo were to be recorded.
Upon our complaint, INEC issued this corrupt official another query and
was given a one-hour ultimatum to produce the form. It was pursuant to
this that he grudgingly produced the form and the results were recorded
and announced.
It is rather disconcerting to read in the dailies that a source close
to Senator Iyiola Omisore rather turned the facts round that the said
official was said to have colluded with APC in manipulating the election
which PDP woefully lost. This is just a shoddy job to corrupt public
opinion and augment their unfortunate election petition which is doomed
to fail. It is certain that Segun Eshinlokun was working for PDP when he
was nabbed by the ever-vigilant APC members who knew the fraudulent
intention of the PDP ahead of the election. It was also certain that the
Electoral Officer for Osogbo Local Government knew that the people of
Osogbo and its environs were going to give the largest votes to APC and
hence his devilish determination to assist Iyiola Omisore to subvert
popular democracy.
We wish to place on record that it is most irresponsible journalism for
a section in the media to gleefully give fillip to falsehood without
proper investigation. The stories above were well known ahead of the
unfortunate publications of 3 September, 2014 where the section of the
media under reference joyously committed perfidy by making the victim
the accused rather than joining hands to condemn an electoral evil which
is destroying the society.
We call on the relevant authorities in INEC to note that the acts
perpetrated by the Electoral Officers of Obokun and Osogbo Local
Governments are criminal in nature. The steps to be taken should not be
limited to administrative discipline but the two culprits must be
prosecuted. They were out to give INEC a bad name in order to satisfy
their gusto for filthy lucre.
The stakes here are very high and INEC should not allow a party to take
over its responsibility of truthfully informing the public as to what is
really going on in the INEC over the last gubernatorial election which
was won convincingly by Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola of the APC.

Barr. Kunle Oyatomi,
Director of Publicity,
Research and Strategy,
APC, State of Osun

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