The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said only the votes of the people of Osun, will determine the next governor of the state.
Solomon Soyebi, Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee of INEC, said this in a statement on Sunday.This followed the outrage as a result of the declaration of the poll inconclusive.Joseph Fuwape, returning officer of the election, had said there were no significant votes to declare a winner.
Ademola Adeleke, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), had polled 254,699 ahead of Isiaka Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who had 254,345 votes.Afuwape said since the number of cancelled votes, 3,498, exceeded the difference between the two leading parties (353), no winner could be declared.
Soyebi, while commending the Osun people, noted that the poll has been one of the keenly contested elections in recent times.
“Notwithstanding, the successful conduct of the elections, the returning officer, Professor Joseph Adeola Fuwape, Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology, Akure, has communicated to the commission his inability to make a return in accordance with the legal framework and INEC guidelines,” the statement read.
“This is as a result of areas where results were cancelled there was no voting or there were disruptions.“Based on the results collated by the returning officer, the margin between the two leading candidates is 353, which is lower than the number of registered voters in the affected areas. Extant law and INEC guidelines and regulations provide that where such a situation occurs, a declaration may not be made.
“In the light of the foregoing, the commission met and decided that it will remobilise and return to the affected polling units on Thursday 27th September 2018 to Rerun the elections, conclude collation and make a Return.
“We appeal to all stakeholders and particularly the people of Osun state to continue with the maturity and peaceful manner they have so far approached the elections. The commission wishes to reiterate its pledge that it is only the votes of the electorate in Osun state that will determine who becomes the next governor of their state.”
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