Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
The Ondo State Independent Electoral Commission (ODIEC) has fixed April 18 for local government election in the state.
The Chairman of the Commission, Professor Yomi Dinakin, who disclosed this on Thursday during a stakeholder meeting with political parties advised them to take note of the statutory notice for the election.
The Commission also advised political parties in the state to conduct their primaries between January 14 and February 7, which Dinakin said must be witnessed by Commission officials.
Meanwhile, during the stakeholders meeting, the Chairman of Mega Party of Nigeria (MPN), Biyi Poroye, called for the resignation of the ODIEC Chairman Dinakin.
He argued that Dinakin is not competent to conduct the election, saying that adequate preparations have not been put in place for the election.
“You (Prof Dinakin) don’t have the moral right to conduct the April 18 election. You are advised to resign. Not every legal thing is moral. You told us that you have written INEC to get the voters’ register. It’s the same excuse you gave in 2018. The whole of 2019 nothing happened. We are not all idiots,” Poroye said.
“I’m very sure that as a party I have the voters’ register of Nigeria not even that of Ondo State is in my office at present. And if indeed you are prepared for this assignment, you ought to have gotten the voters’ register. You are telling us that you will be expecting the voters’ register by January end. And if there is a crisis again who is to be blamed.
“We went out there and we told our party members to corporate with this commission at inception. I was an electoral officer here. I passed through this place. And we were so sure that in 2018 that Governor Akeredolu will be the first governor that will conduct the election within that shot time to his credit. As if we were dreaming, just like that August went by, the whole of 2019 nothing happened.
“You are now telling us that you don’t have to consult political parties and whoever wants to collect their money should go and collect their money. I’ve no fear of what could be on the line. But sir I want to appeal to you to resign because with what is on the ground it shows that you are not prepared for this election. This issue of the money is not about a transaction, it is a process.
“You are not just a legal luminary, you are a teacher of the law. You know that when time table is given for an election, nobody can stop it. You are giving us another time table to start another election. This is the first time this is happening in the history of Nigeria.”
Reacting, the ODIEC Chairman said: “One of the things we learnt as teachers is that your students write your testimonial. If any political party or individual has the voters’ register it’s not authentic, it’s not what ODIEC can work on. If ODIEC wants to conduct an election, INEC must be properly written to release the voters’ register at a given date.
“Asking me to resign is a question of my choice,” he said.