By Christopher Oji, Lagos
A legal practitioner, Omolara Ademola, has won the chairmanship of the 1004 Estate House Owners and Residents Association (HORA) Lagos. She emerged the new chairman in a general election held in the estate.
Last year, a group of residents in the high brow estate who were reportedly indulging in criminal acts of illegal connection of electricity, non payment of service charge and so on, had teamed up to scandalise Ademola by alleging that she misappropriated about N9 billion. The story went viral in most major online platforms, social, print and electronic media and it took the effort of some residents who were in the majority to debunk the allegation as unfounded.
The recent general election had come as a constitutional event following the expiration of the current term of the executive committee. The HORA constitution stipulates that executive officers of the association shall hold office for two years, at the expiration of which another election would take place.
Determined to continue offering her services irrespective of distraction from her traducers, she vied for the full chairmanship position. Another aspirant, Edith Onigbe, formerly of the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and homeowner in the estate, also put herself forward for the chairmanship election.
However, at about 7 am on election day, Onigbe reportedly put up a public notice in the estate announcing her formal withdrawal from the chairmanship race.
This scenario invariably made Ademola a sole candidate to the position. However; in order to fulfill the requirements of HORA constitution which stipulates that in the event of a sole candidacy, there must be a majority win or the position will be re-contested, votes were cast for her. At the end of the exercise, she got 76.4% vote, which by the constitution is a majority vote. She was thereby declared winner.
Other positions were contested for, and the following persons emerged winners: Deji Kolawole as Vice Chairman 1. Joshua Anemeje Vice Chairman 2. Chike Egbuji as General Secretary. They were all sworn on Tuesday March 30.
Voting during the election was done virtually in compliance with COVID-19 protocols and it was coordinated by Chams Plc, a renowned information technology firm in Nigeria.
Ademola had served in the capacity of General Secretary of HORA in 2019 before she became the Acting Chairman sometime in 2020 when the incumbent chairman exited office before the expiration of his tenure. Ademola’s strict and transparent leadership in the last one-year had brought some sanity to the estate.