Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
Indications emerged Tuesday that local government elections in Ondo State may be held in before the middle of the year.
Governor Rotimi Akeredolu dropped the hint while swearing in members of the Ondo State Independent Electoral Commission (ODIEC) at the Governor’s office in Akure.
The Governor also declared his administration’s commitment to delivering the dividends of democracy to the people of the southwestern state.
He expressed the readiness of his administration to ensure that elections are held in the local government areas in the state before the end of the year.
Akeredolu charged members of ODIEC to ensure that the next round of elections to be conducted are free, fair and credible.
“It is possible for us to have the leadership of a local government belong to a different political party from the one in control of the state. Our political experiences make the possibility appear remote in this clime. It is attainable if we are committed and sincere,” said Governor Akeredolu.
He said for democracy to work, must be free, fair and credible elections, down to the local government level.
“The local government is guaranteed in section 7 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended). It is expected to discharge its mandate to the people in the areas of primary education, health care, recreation and social development,” he explained.
“Markets, parks and other public recreational facilities are within the jurisdiction of the local government. The scope of administration at this level covers issues which affect the immediate welfare of the majority of the people. There is no gain saying the obvious that local government plays pivotal roles in the development of the country.”
The Governor charged the newly inaugurated members of the Ondo State Property Development Corporation to contribute meaningfully to the development of the state.
He stated that it was time to justify the trust reposed on them by the people and government of the state.
The Governor had earlier nominated Prof. Yomi Dinakin as Chairman of ODIEC, with other members including Dr. Soji Omowole, Oladele Akinyelure, Tunde Adeleye, Mrs Stella Omotoso, Taju Ibrahim and Rotimi Olorunfemi.
All the nominees were cleared last week by the state House of Assembly.