Clement Adeyi, Osogbo
As electorate prepare to go to the polls and vote for the candidates of their choice in the forthcoming governorship election in Osun State, Governor Rauf Aregbesola, has urged them not to vote for political parties and candidates that have penchant for bad governance and anti-progress agenda.
He noted that if such were given the chance of ruling the state, they would bring a setback to all the developmental projects already put in place by the current administration.
Governor Aregbesola stated this while declaring open a three-day workshop organised for stakeholders on the conduct of the elections by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in conjunction with the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
He said that it was important for the spate of development in the state to continue by electing a progressive governor that is passionate about engendering further development in the state.
He reminded the stakeholders, including traditional rulers, religious leaders, political leaders, security organisations, and civil society organisations that they had crucial roles to play during the election and urged them to live up to expectations.
The governor insisted that traditional rulers had a pivotal role to play in ensuring that elections were peaceful in their various domains.
He, however, commended the UNDP for performing its social responsibility by organising a series of workshops for various stakeholders aimed at ensuring the success of the poll.
“I want to say that traditional rulers have a stake in good governance in their various domains and in maintaining security. When these two things are in place, they automatically translates to peace and development.
“For instance, before the advent of our administration, people used to live in fear, because Osun was so insecure that people slept with one eye closed.
“This is why it is very important that candidates and parties notorious for bad governance and retrogression should not be given a chance to rule the state again.
“Traditional rulers and civil society organisations have a significant role to play at ensuring that we have a peaceful election. We must all do away with activities that negate the principles of free and fair elections if we want to move forward as a people,” the governor said.
While welcoming participants to the workshop, a representative of the Country Director of the UNDP, Prof. Mathew Alao, said peaceful conduct of the election was very important because it would serve as a template for the 2019 elections.
Alao added that through a free and fair process, electorates would be able to vote for candidates of their choice based on their programmes and manifesto.
“The UNDP is determined to ensure a peaceful election in Osun for several reasons. First and foremost, peaceful elections promote peaceful co-existence and build accountable institutions for the society.
“The 2019 general elections are also around the corner and whatever happens in Osun on September 22 will have a great impact in the general elections. So, we want to ensure that we get everything right in Osun,” Alao concluded.