APC’s Isiaka Oyetola wins Osun governorship election
By Timileyin Omilana
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Gboyega Oyetola, the winner of the Osun State governorship election, which was concluded on Thursday.
After the summation of last Saturday’s inconclusive election and Thursday’s rerun election results, Oyetola polled 255,505 votes to defeat People’s Democratic Party’s candidate, Ademola Adeleke, who got 255,023 votes.
“That Gboyega Oyetola, having satisfied the requirement of the law and won the highest number of votes is hereby declared winner and returned elected,” the returning officer for the election Prof. Adeola Afuwape said on Friday morning.
On Saturday, Adeleke polled 254,698 votes to beat Oyetola who trailed him with 254,345 votes. INEC, however, declared the election inconclusive because the margin between the PDP and APC, 353 votes, is less than the number of registered voters, 3,498, in the seven polling units where elections were cancelled.
The rerun election was held at three polling units in Orolu, two polling units in Ife South, one polling unit in Ife North local governments and one polling unit in Osogbo.
Prior to the rerun on Thursday, the leaders from PDP and APC, courted the candidate of Social Democratic Party, Iyiola Omisore, who came third in the Saturday’s inconclusive election.
Although Omisore stood no chance to be elected governor in the supplementary poll, his support was crucial in the rerun as there was a total of three polling units at stake for the APC and PDP in Ife, where Omisore hails from.
Omisore agreed to form an alliance with the APC for the rerun election because the ruling party heeded his demands while he claimed PDP lacked integrity. He said: “the characters in the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) are serial liars and not men of honour and integrity, having reneged in all previous agreements.”
However, Thursday’s rerun election was marred by irregularities and intimidation perpetrated by political thugs despite the huge deployment of security operatives at the polling units.
An election monitoring group, Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), also faulted the rerun election in Osun State as anti-democratic.
The CDD noted that the number of the incidents recorded during the poll have undermined the sanctity of the vote and the overall credibility of the electoral process.
“We hold strongly the view that the re-run poll of Thursday, September 27, 2018, does not meet up with the minimum standards for free, fair and credible elections,” the CDD said in a statement.
“It falls short of global best practices in democratic elections which Nigeria aspires towards,” it added.
Despite the irregularities reported by journalists and observers, INEC officials at the collation centre all said the election went on smoothly.