Clement Adeyi, Osogbo
Osun State-based Christian groups have expressed dissatisfaction with the recent People’s Democratic Party (PDP) governorship primary in the state, describing it as a ‘fraudulent exercise’.
The groups, in a joint statement issued, in Osogbo, on Monday, declared that except justice was done, it might be difficult for the party to excel in the governorship election on September 22.
The groups said in the statement, “We firmly believe that whoever emerges through such manipulative exercise cannot be entrusted with the destiny of over five million people.
“We wish to state emphatically that it will be difficult to support a person that is characteristically defective to be the next governor of Osun State.”
Leaders of the groups that signed the statement were Rev. Michael Adebomi of the Osun State Chapter of Nigeria Prays, Rev. Nehemiah Initiative for Nation Building, Rev Tunji Ayorinde, Christian Initiative for Nation Building, Bro. Olawole Oladapo, Christian Leadership Mobilisation Initiative International, Rev. Theophilus Ayodeji, Movement for Positive Change, Rev Walter Aworanti and Gospel Pushers Association, Pastor Olatunde Babalola.
The statement said further: “We are a coalition of Christian Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) with deep interest in our country’s economic, religion, social and political life.
“At this point, our attention is shifted to Osun State and in particular the preparation towards the forthcoming September 22nd, 2018 governorship election.
“As major stakeholders in good governance, we need to bring to the notice of all that we conscientiously monitored all the primaries of all the political parties in Osun State. Reports were received from our field officers and we ensured we kept same for posterity sake.
“While commending all the political parties for painstakingly conducting their primaries, we observed that the process that led to the emergence of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate was flawed, openly manipulated and was rigged in favour of a particular person.
“Apart from reports that fake delegates were allowed to vote during the primary and other anti-democratic practices which characterised the exercise which took place at GMT Hotel in Osogbo, one major item we wish to point out was the blatant failure to allow recount of Senator Adeleke’s vote whereas when the votes of two other contestants were recounted, errors were detected and corrected.
“We observed that in spite of vehement protest by the agents of another leading aspirant in person of Dr. Akin Ogunbiyi asking for recount of Senator Adeleke’s votes, this complaint was rebuffed.
“Our initial thought was that PDP has learnt from its past mistakes, but with the Osun State scenario, it was clear that corruption may have been deep-rooted in the party and we sincerely hope that the National Working Committee of PDP will ensure that such is erased from the minds of ordinary Nigerians by doing justice to this matter.”