Femi Makinde, Osogbo
The Resident Electoral Commissioner in Osun State, Mr Olusegun Agbaje, has vowed to resign his appointment if the Supreme Court finds the Independent National Electoral Commission guilty in the conduct of the recently concluded governorship election in the state.
Agbaje said this in his speech in Osogbo on Wednesday during the presentation of the certificate of return to the Osun State Governor-elect, Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola, of the All Progressives Congress.
Oyetola and the Deputy Governor-elect, Mr Benedict Alabi, were given the certificate of return by the National Electoral Commissioner representing Oyo, Osun and Ekiti states, Mr Solomon Soyebi, at INEC office in Osogbo.
The REC said those who were dissatisfied with the outcome of the election had the right to seek redress at election petition tribunal where their case would be examined by the panel.
Agbaje said he and the officials of the INEC were very neutral and that they did not do anything to give any of the contestants an undue advantage over others.
He said, “I would nevertheless want to reassure the good people of Osun State, particularly our royal fathers and religious leaders, that I remained extremely neutral throughout the period of the election. I can positively stress that my members of staff also did.
“However, if at the end of the litigation at the Supreme Court of Nigeria, the commission is found culpable for not discharging its responsibility faithfully and diligently, I will take full responsibility for any such laxity, publicly apologise to all Nigerians and thereafter resign my appointment with the commission.
“I honestly believe that I worked very hard with my lieutenants to ensure that we justify the confidence of the people and the mobilised human and material resources provided for us by the commission to prosecute the election.”
Oyetola, who was declared the winner of the election, contested on the platform of the APC and defeated the Peoples Democratic Party, Senator Ademola Adeleke.
Receiving the certificate, Oyetola commended INEC and security agencies for doing a great job during the poll.
The governor-elect promised to make the welfare of the people the focus of his administration while restating that he would run an all-inclusive government.
Oyetola said, “I have to thank God and I commend INEC for doing a wonderful job at the main election and the rerun. You did a wonderful job. You minimised casualties and you were neutral in the way you managed things during that election.
“We should all say the truth and say the truth at all times. I will also commend security agencies for doing a wonderful job.
“One of our agents was killed in Esa Odo. Given the magnitude of the election, we were bound to have hitches here and there. There were fake observers and fake observers, should be something that should worry everybody. We should be fair while commenting on the role of INEC and security agencies in the election.
“The victory is for the people of the state, for believing in our party and in me. I will justify the confidence reposed in me. Mine is to serve and I will serve to the best of my ability. Genuine stakeholders will come on board so that we can run the state together. I will always consult with the majority of the stakeholders in making decisions.
“We will ensure that our programmes are people friendly. The main focus of our administration will be the welfare of the people. I must not fail to recognise the Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, for giving me the opportunity to serve.”
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