Ondo fixes LG poll for April 18, parties fume
THe Ondo State Independent electoral Commission has announced April 18, 2020 as the date scheduled to conduct the local government election in the state.
The last council poll was held on April 16, 2016 when the then ruling party, the Peoples Democratic Party, won all the chairmanship seats in the 18 local government areas of the state.
The commission’s chairman, Prof Yomi Dinakin, made the announcement during a stakeholders’ meeting with the representatives of the various political parties in the state, at the headquarters of the commission in Akure, the state capital.
The chairman said there was the need for politicians and other stakeholders to take note of the statutory notice for the election.
He directed the political parties in the state to conduct their primaries between January 14 and February 7, 2020.
He said, “The primaries must be supervised by officials of the commission.”
The chairman also noted that political parties that had earlier paid for their candidates in the 2018 aborted scheduled election would not pay again, adding that there would be room for substitutions of candidates.
He said, “The commission had requested from the INEC, a comprehensive register for the conduct of the election.”
However, at the meeting some members of the political parties in attendance, rejected this on date given by ODIEC for the election, arguing that it was too close.
They also faulted the commission for not giving them the voter register.
One of the representatives of the political parties and the Chairman of Mega Party of Nigeria, Mr Biyi Poroye, argued that adequate preparation had not been put in place by the parties.
He blamed the commission for not having the voter register.
He said, “You (Prof. Dinakin) don’t have the moral right to conduct the April 18 election.
“You are advised to resign. Not every legal thing is moral. You told us that you have written INEC to get the voter register.’’
“It’s the same excuse you gave in 2018. The whole of 2019 nothing happened. We are not all idiots.”
But in his reaction, the ODIEC boss said, the commission had carried out the assignment the way it should be done .
He said, “One of the things we learnt as teachers is that your students write your testimonial.
“If any political party or individual has the voter register it is not authentic, it is not what ODIEC can work on.
“If ODIEC wants to conduct an election, INEC must be properly written to release the voter’ register at a given date. Asking me to resign is a question of my choice.”