Osun election: Police appeared compromised during rerun – NBA

Osun election: Police appeared compromised during rerun – NBA
A picture taken on September 22, 2018 shows an electoral officer raising a ballot to count results in a ward after the Osun State gubernatorial election in Ede, near Osogbo, Osun State in southwest Nigeria. The Osun election is seen as a litmus test for the president's popularity as he seeks a second term in February. PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP
Agence France-Presse

The Nigerian Bar Association said the police appeared compromised during the conduct of the September 27 supplementary governorship election in Osun State.

In the report by its ad-hoc committee on the rerun, the association said the police refused to question the activities of about “fierce-looking me who invaded the area at Orolu” where part of the supplementary took place.

The ad-hoc committee chaired by Mr. Tawo Tawo (SAN), stated in its report that the rerun “fell far short of a free and fair election compared to what transpired in the election of the September 22”.

Ademola Adeleke of the Peoples Democratic Party was leading with 353 votes in the September 22 election which the Independent National Electoral Commission declared inconclusive.

But Gboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress came from his second position in the main election to win the supplementary poll and the declared winner in the final results.

The NBA, in its report which was published on its website late on Sunday, said the police by their actions and inactions, appeared compromised in the rerun election that took place in seven polling units across four local government areas.

The report added, “In conclusion, the rerun of the Osun State Gubernatorial Election fell far short of a free and fair election compared to what transpired in the election of the 22nd day of September, 2018 in Osun State which was however declared inconclusive.

”From the actions and inactions of the Nigerian Police Force they appeared to have been compromised given the fact that the Police did not question the activities of the about fifty (50) fierce-looking men who invaded the area at Orolu.”

The NBA said members of its observation team, monitored the election at Osogbo polling unit 17, ward 5, in Osogbo where the observed “massive armed security presence with movement around the polling unit restricted to voters and observers”.

The report noted that all the election materials were made available for the election and the electoral protocols for voting were fulfilled by the electoral officers at the unit.

It stated that accreditation and voting commenced at about 8:02 am and the voting process went on smoothly till about 11:30 am “when some hoodlums invaded the area in an attempt to disrupt the process”.

It added, “The situation was brought under control by the security personnel present.

“In spite of the seeming and subtle form of intimidation, voters were undaunted as they did cast their votes.

“There was substantial compliance with the election process and procedure at the polling units.”

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