The Peoples Democratic Party candidate in the August 9 Osun State governorship election, Senator Iyiola Omisore, has challenged the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to open up on the reasons why it suspended two of its top ranking officials in the state.
The PDP candidate, who faulted claims by INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the state, Mr. Olusegun Agbaje that the two officials were suspended for alleged administrative lapses, said there were incontrovertible evidence to prove that the officials were suspended for allegedly manipulating the results of the last election in their local government areas.
In a statement, the Press Officer to Omisore, Mr. Victor Oriola, insisted that INEC was telling half-truths on the reason why it suspend the two officials.
He accused INEC of attempting to muddle up facts on the alleged indictment of its key staff.
The INEC had on Monday suspended the electoral officers that supervised the governorship election in both Osogbo and Obokun local government areas of the state, Messrs Tope Fabunmi and Olusegun Esinoye, for alleged administrative lapses.
But Omisore in his reaction to the development, cautioned the national headquarters of INEC not to consent to an alleged plot to cover up the involvement of its staff “using nebulous administrative lapses”.
He said: “We would not have bothered to join issues with the state office of INEC but the need to set records straight supersedes all other considerations. We, therefore, challenge INEC office in Osun State to provide answers to the following questions: What offence was committed to warrant suspension of the two electoral officers? In an electoral setting, what offence constitutes administrative lapses?
“The electoral officer of Obokun, who tampered with election materials meant for August 9 election, was cleared by INEC on the ground that it was a minor misdemeanor. INEC should explain to Nigerians why minor misdemeanor now warrants suspension again. Why are all these coming up again after we filed our petition before the tribunal?”
He added: “We make bold to say that the vestige of the former Resident Electoral Commissioner, Rufus Akeju, who had doctored the data capturing machine and other electoral materials to give APC undue advantage will continue to haunt Osun INEC until the controversial REC is made to account for his misdeeds”.
According to him: “We have it on good authority that after it was discovered that APC legal team will not be able to pass the litmus test at the tribunal because of the gargantuan electoral harakiri it perpetrated on August 9, some hack writers have been contracted to commence media fireworks against the tribunal in order to discredit it”.
The former senator, however, expressed the hope that he would reclaim his mandate through the tribunal in no distant time.