Election monitors from the United States, United Kingdom and European Union have given their initial assessment of the just concluded governorship election in Osun State, declaring that they had serious concerns about the conduct of Thursday’s re-run vote.
A member of the election observation team gave the assessment during a press conference in Osogbo, the Osun State capital. The Crest monitored it on Channels Television in Lagos.
The member said his group heard reports of electoral voter irregularities, voter harassment as well as interference by ‘inappropriate persons’ during the re-run.
“We are very concerned by these reports and will be checking with stakeholders to check the facts,” declared the member of the group who doubled as its spokesperson. “We call on all stakeholders to remain calm.”
A local but leading observer group, the Centre for Democracy and Development, CDD, also picked holes in Thursday’s electoral process.
In a statement distributed to journalists in Osogbo, the group said it observed certain “anti-democratic acts which have undermined the sanctity of the ballot.”
Consequently, the group said: “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 Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, ordered a rerun for Thursday after it discovered a discrepancy in the tally of votes cast during Saturday’s election. Though Ademola Adeleke, candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, led Gboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in that poll, INEC said the margin of victory was less than the total cancelled votes.
Consequently, the electoral umpire voided the votes from seven polling units in four local government areas. It, therefore, ordered a rerun in the affected units.
In the small hours of Friday, INEC announced the final results and declared APC’s Adegboyega Isiaka Oyetola winner of the election; and was pronounced duly elected as the next governor of Osun State.