The Oyo State chapter of the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) on Thursday urged its members across the state to boycott the proposed local government election billed to take place on Saturday.
SPN Chairman, Comrade Kolapo Oladapo while addressing journalists during a press conference in Ibadan, the state state capital, declared that the party was yet to be given a copy of electoral areas recognised by INEC less than 48 hours to the so called election.
Oladapo who also allege that its candidate for the election is yet to be given nomination form less than 48 hours to the election, directed member of the party across the state not to participate in the election.
He called on the commission to comply with the court order and refrain from going ahead with the May 12, 2018 local council election.
Oladapo said, “This is because as we speak our party and its candidate is yet to be given a copy of electoral areas recognised by INEC upon which the election is expected to be conducted. Our candidate has not also been given a nomination form in less than 48 hours to the election. Even if the nomination form is given today, there is yet to be any information as to the polling units where the election is meant to hold.
“It is in the consideration of this fact that, we of the SPN call on the OYSIEC to comply with the court order and refrain from going ahead with the May 12, 2018 local council election. Even if OYSIEC has gone to court to set the order aside we still hold that the commission is not capable to guarantee that the May 12 poll will not end up in an illegality.
Oladapo while speaking further then dissociate the party from the councils elections billed to hold on Saturday.
He said “It is in the light of this consideration that we of SPN publicly dissociate ourselves and the party from the May 12 poll which is going to be nothing but a nullity”.
“On the April 5, 2018, we notified OYOSIEC through a letter titled: Notification on the party resolutions and choice of candidates for the fourth coming LG election of the decision of our party to sponsor Comrade Abiodun Bamigboye to contest for the chairmanship position in Ibadan South-west Local government area. Comrade Abiodun Bamigboye was subsequently invited by the commission for screening on the April 9, 2018 during which he was certified to be eligible to stand as a candidate in the election”.
He said despite the fact that the party has notified the commission the choice of its candidate, the party’s flag bearer is yet to be given the nomination form.
Oladapo said, “Comrade Abiodun Bamigboye is yet to be given a nomination form by the OYSIEC despite the certification of his eligibility to contest for the chairmanship.
“Since Wednesday, May 2, 2018, there have been various exchanges of claims and counter-claims between the OYSIEC and an aggrieved faction of the APC over an interim order granted by a Federal High Court 2 sitting in Ibadan, Oyo State to stop the May 12 council poll.
“Going by this interim order, it is obvious that it will be wrong for the OYSIEC to go on with the May 12, 2018 council election on the basis of the electoral wards created by OYSIEC itself. This is because the Constitution does not empower the OYSIEC to create electoral area in which the LG election is meant to be held. Section 4 of the 1999 constitution of the Federal republic of Nigeria (as amended) is so clear of the powers of the SIEC which is to organise, undertake and supervise all elections to local government councils within the state.
“According to the section 148, of the 1999 Constitution, only the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is empowered with the responsibility of updating the voters register including the creation, delineation and adjustment of the electoral areas which must be made available to SEIC for the conduct of the election into local councils itself.
“This shows that the electoral areas created by OYSIEC which were recently given to political parties including our party by OYSIEC is illegal and cannot be used to conduct the May 12 election especially that such electoral areas created are in conflict with the one created by INEC. In Ibadan south-west LGA for instance, the INEC recognised electoral areas in the LGA are divided into 12 electoral wards while the number of electoral ward given to our party by OYSIEC for the same LGA are 10.
“However, whether the OYSIEC complies with the interim order or defies it, the fact remains that the both the court order and the atmosphere of confusion that develops from it are just a reflection of the growing political rancour among the major political gladiators in the ruling party in the state.
“A glimpse of this tension was seen on Saturday, May 5, 2018 when the ruling party attempted to conduct it congress at ward level across the state. This congress which ended inconclusive reflects how leading members of the party were desperate in ensuring that their acolytes in the party emerge as party delegates at ward levels.”