As we keep enjoying the joyful atmosphere of the Olojo Festival, it is essential that I address your concerns regarding yesterday’s tribunal verdict. Your outcry against the tribunal verdict has been felt, and I urge you to please remain calm and law-abiding. I would like to assure you that our mandate remains intact, and the judgment will be duly appealed as soon as possible.
I see this period as a good time to appreciate you for the confidence you placed in me, which eventually led to my emergence as the Honourable Member representing Ife Central State Constituency at the Osun State House of Assembly, and I promise to keep on working hard to exceed your expectations.
My commitment to fulfilling my campaign promises has resulted in remarkable achievements within my first 100 days in office. In a short period of time, we have accomplished what many believed to be impossible for years. We’ve attended to every aspect of my 5-point agenda as a legislator and your representative. I have sponsored two bills, and one of them has already gone past its second reading.
We have embarked on and successfully completed significant projects in the areas of water supply, street electrification, support for education, welfare, Human capital development and the protection of the people. The joy in the hearts of the people who have been refreshed by the ultra-modern solar-powered water supply system at Igbo Agbo Community (Opposite Oduduwa College) and Obafemi Awolowo University Junior staff quarters still remains fresh. The solar-powered street light at Elefon has also illuminated many hearts, helping their security issues. Over 1000 students who benefitted from the distribution of Education Materials remain very happy up till this moment. We also ensured that people benefitted from the welfare packages distributed during the Ileya Festival. Many of our constituents have also benefited from cash grants to help ameliorate the current economic conditions in the country. This is just the tip of the iceberg, as there is still a lot of impact I intend to make over the next few years as your legislator and representative.
Without much digression, I will like to provide everyone with the right perspective on the matter at hand.
Misplacement of Justice
During the House of Assembly election, the actions of those who disrupted the peace and integrity of our election were evident, as thugs associated with the APC attacked 23 polling units. However, despite the chaos and attempts to thwart the will of the people, we emerged victorious through your overwhelming support, yet the journey did not end there.
The opposition, unwilling to accept the voice of the people, took us to the tribunal, where they brazenly fabricated claims that our party was responsible for the disruption of those polling units. The judiciary, as the arbiter of justice, reached a verdict based on mere presumptions and called for a rerun in the 23 affected polling units, in addition to 3 polling units that were canceled due to overvoting, making 26 polling units.
Let me state clearly that there are numerous pieces of evidence that clearly show that the petitioners themselves used thugs, touts, and miscreants to disrupt the affected polling units, and I believe the appellate court will do justice in due time. As for the verdict given by the court, with utmost respect for the Judiciary, the Court in the first instance did not properly grasp the facts of the case. Since the petitioners were unable to present any worthy witness, the words of a collation officer or agent who spoke based on hearsay were all that the judges based their verdict on.
The petitioners were also supposed to bring substantial evidence to back their claims on over-voting, but they failed to bring any witnesses and couldn’t produce the voter register to show the number of PVC collected and the number of people who voted to back their claims. This is Settled Law in the Oyetola vs Adeleke Supreme Court Judgement. The petitioners failed to establish their case, and what I find unbelievable is the fact that they want to shift their obvious crimes to us just because of their desperate quest for power. Perhaps, It is unknown to them that we have visual evidence of their Election Day activities.
I understand the concerns and apprehension that this situation may have stirred among my constituents. Your mandate is intact and will not be stolen by anyone. Democracy is built on the principles of justice, fairness, and the people’s will. We have already met with our lawyers to start the appeal process, we trust that the appellate Judges will follow proper judicial precedence to strengthen our mandate.
In the course of taking the next action, I assure you that justice will not be trampled upon, and you can be rest assured that I will continue the good work I have started. Our constituency deserves nothing less than the best representation, and I am fully committed to delivering on the promises made during the campaign, way beyond what I have already started. We will not go back to the dark days.
Together, we shall build a better Ife Central State Constituency, where progress, development, and inclusivity are our guiding principles.
Thank you for your support. May our collective strength and determination continue to shine as a beacon of hope for Ife Central State Constituency.
Hon. Abiola Jeremiah Awoyeye
Member, OSHA, Ife Central State Constituency