Saturday, March 2, 2019 5:49 pm
Adejoke Adeleye, Abeokuta
Members of Coalition of United Political Parties, an umbrella body for six political parties on Friday staged a protest over the declaration of Sen. Lekan Mustapha of All Progressives Congress, APC as the winner of the February 23 election for Ogun East senatorial district.
While alleging that the result declared confirmed their suspicions that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC colluded with APC to subvert the will of the people and robb the PDP candidate, Engr. Ayoola Sosanwo of an overwhelming victory.
The group said it has equally petitioned INEC and security agencies drawing attention to their displeasure over the way INEC handled the senatorial election and therefore calling for redress as democracy could not thrive in the midst of injustice and disregard to extant provisions of the law.
Members of the coalition parties during the protest held in Sagamu carried placards bearing different messages to drive their points home such as “Is INEC now an appendage of APC?” “INEC, why rub us of our mandate?” “All we are asking for is a rerun at Ajebandele” “INEC must never allow over 13,000 voters in Ajebandele to be disenfranchised” among others.
Speaking during the protest, the Coordinator of the group, Prince Yomi Solanke noted that the INEC Returning Officer for Ogun East, Prof Chris Nwoka had earlier declared the senatorial election inconclusive due to the cancellation of the result of Ajebandele Ward in Ijebu East local government and that everyone was only waiting for the electoral body to pick a new date for rerun election in the affected ward.
Solanke said, “We are however surprised to wake up on Tuesday to hear that Sen. Lekan Mustapha of APC had been declared winner and Senator elect for Ogun East. What has really changed between Sunday and Tuesday? Who is Prof. Chris Nwoka working for? This no doubt is a daylight robbery against PDP’s candidate in this election, Engr. Ayoola Sosanwo.
“They are very much aware that this ward with over 13,000 voters is strong hold of PDP, so INEC decided to connive with the ruling party to trample on the choice of the majority in Ogun East, Engr. Ayoola Sosanwo of PDP. We are rejecting this illegality in its entirety and we strongly call on Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mamoud Yakub to wade in and correct this injustice to prevent breakdown of law and order”.