With Adetunji Ayobrown
World over, democracy they say, is a government of the people by the people and for the people, but how best do we describe the last Osun state guber rerun, where all the attributes and features of democracy were reversed for the unpopular and undesirable candidate that emerged, God forbids, but a disaster we are all praying against may have finally reared its ugly head as a result of INEC and APC-led Federal Government’s handling of states’ elections…terrible things happen for whatever reason.
Osun state has funny itinerary of election calendar different from the rest of Nigerian states; as it is known, it is about the very last state’s election before the 2019 general elections. Some call it general election pointer, others say it is a warm up or pre-match election where the winners take it as a required base to build on, leading up to the 2019 general elections. Otherwise, the losers will use it as a reference to what may happen if they do not double their efforts for the bigger elections coming up next year.
Prophesy is a strong thing if you ask me, what happened has been foretold; APC is better at stealing what they cannot grow to build itself, however, it will soon crumble, it is just a matter of time. The reality is on ground that what happened at the election proper and rerun was pure stealing and nothing more.
The last Thursday guber election rerun was characterised by widespread voters’ intimidation, violence and harassment as well as denial of accredited local and international observers from access to polling units. Also, duly registered voters were prevented from participating in the electoral process by thugs and compromised security agents. For truth, most commentators knew what to expect, and so it happened, Muhammadu Buhari’s APC led government did not disappoint us at all, what can one expect from such a clueless government?
The APC’s claim to be the winner is an illegality, this was supported by the All Progressives Congress (APC), through its national chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole publicly admitting that his party rigged the Osun guber election. “I think that for democracy to flourish, only people who can accept the pain of rigging (sorry defeat) should contest election – Oshiomole was quoted as saying.
The ‘Pain of rigging’: Oshiomhole’s gaffe on Osun rerun became a trending news item. Oshiomhole, the party’s national chairman statement is trending on social media; this is a blunder he made during a press conference last Friday. He made the gaffe while commenting on the Osun governorship rerun election, which was claimed to have been won by Gboyega Oyetola, his party’s candidate.
“I think that for democracy to flourish, only people who can accept the pain of rigging, sorry, defeat should participate in an election,” the former Edo governor said. Those who stammer don’t tell stories, may be, he ought to have allowed the Information Minister to handle such.
The Chairman of the Council’s Media Committee of the election, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, congratulated the Governor-elect, Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola, the outgoing Governor Rauf Aregbesola and all APC members for the “well deserved but hard-earned victory.” APC commended INEC and the security agencies for what they described as a “largely peaceful and orderly election, as attested to by local and international observers”.
He rhetorically said “as a party of change, we believe strongly in the democratic process. We believe in the ability of the relevant institutions to carry out their assigned responsibilities and we believe in the ability of the people to do what is right. “This is the right thing to do, considering the impressive performance of the APC-government in Osun in the last eight years,” it said.
The Council advised the opposing Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to stop issuing threats but to take full advantage of the democratic process if it has any grouse with the supplementary election.
Millions of people, locally and internationally, have reacted, condemning the results in its totality. The Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki twitted “yesterday, we witnessed another display of the subversion of the will of the Osun people during the #OsunReRun gubernatorial election in the State. The election was characterised by widespread voters intimidation, violence and harassment”.
The Ekiti State Governor, Peter Ayodele Fayose also said, “it was obvious even to the blind that the Osun election, as was the case with Ekiti, was a contest between the PDP and the security agencies supervised by a compromised INEC.
Olufemi Adebimpe said “in Surulere where I live, the group of people who are most incensed by the Osun election results are neither from the state or from the geopolitical region the State is in. I observed the same reactions after the Ekiti elections. But why?
Asimolowo Oluwadara: Read a lot of reactions on Twitter about the just concluded Osun Gubernatorial election and they all showed to me that only few people are happy with the results as declared by INEC”. He called it ‘Politiciantocracy’ and ‘Militocracy’.
For T.U. Danjuma Esq. the ?Osun rerun election, RIP Nigerian democracy, what do Nigerians expect from a group of dangerous chemicals put together in the name of political party; “gangsters’ party”? Negative reactions; and this is one of such.
Chukwuka Christopher Okafor said INEC wants to use Osun election to test the reactions of Nigerians because this is the last election before the 2019 elections. If Nigerians allow this day light robbery in Osun state, then INEC would have no qualms rigging Buhari and APC candidates in because Nigerians have endorsed their impunity.
According to Lawrence Edoki, there are things that you cannot get, no matter how you try, the truth is that the APC party cannot win the OSUN rerun election come Thursday, but if they insist on winning, the reaction of the people will be so violent that if not properly handled the whole country will be on fire.
Experience put some men in foul mood, we all live different lives for different reasons; some political parties take election as a ‘do or die’ process, winning at all, and every cost.
The past had already been written and its ink is dry, Osun gubernatorial election and its rerun had come and gone but has left us its marks of unpleasant tracks and wounds, which may not heal soon. Surely, for all parties, bitter lessons are learnt by force.
Ayobrown, Senior System Analyst, National Pilot Newspaper, writes via firstname.lastname@example.org