Stalwarts of opposition political parties in Oyo State, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) and Action Democratic Party (ADP), on Wednesday condemned the Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission (OYSIEC) for its failure to conduct delimitation of constituencies in the newly created Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs) before the May 12th forthcoming local government election was announced.
Those who spoke at a stakeholders’ meeting organised by the commission in Ibadan, while expressing doubts over the readiness of OYSIEC to conduct elections into the 33 Local Government Areas and 35 Local Council Development Areas in the state, expressed dissatisfaction over the preparations of OYSIEC for the election.
They argued that it was wrong for the commission to announce the date prior to delimitation of wards in the 35 newly created LCDAs.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Secretary in the state, Mr. Emiola Wasiu insisted that political parties in the state deserved to know how many wards were in each of the newly created LCDAs.
Emiola said “The creation of LCDAs is new in Oyo state, and this is the first time we will be having elections in the LCDAs. We want to know how many wards are in each of the newly created LCDA”.
APGA Chairman, Mr. Angel Folorunso while speaking, noted that coming out with election timetable without proper delimitation of constituencies waas like putting the cart before the horse.
Folorunso wondered how the commission wanted political parties to prepare for the council polls without knowing which wards they would present councillorship candidates to contest election.
State Secretary of Action Democratic Party (ADP) Mr. Dare Ojo, while contributing declared that members of the opposition parties had every reason to have negative mindsets towards OYSIEC.
Ojo said “I believe that our mindsets are correct. During the last time, many of us wasted a lot of money to print posters, handbills and to embark on campaign and mobilization. At the end of the day, council elections were not held again”.
CNPP Chairman, Alhaji Yinka Olona who also corroborated his colleagues’ stand, declared that the meeting revealed that OYSIEC still had a lot of work to do.
Olona noted that there were some fundamental issues which OYSIEC failed to properly address during the meeting.
Chairman of the commission Mr. Jide Ajeigbe in his reactions, however, assured the stakeholders of the commitment of OYSIEC to conduct free and fair council polls.
Ajeigbe noted that most of the questions being asked by stakeholders were products of their mindsets, urging them to divulge themselves of negative mindsets towards the electoral commission.