The governor of Osun state, Rauf Aregbesola, has described the verdict of the Osun Election Petition Tribunal, affirming him winner of the 2014 governorship election in the state “as the triumph of the will and wishes of the people”.
The tribunal, chaired by Justice Elizabeth Ikpejime, had Friday dismissed the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, candidate, Iyiola Omisore, on the August 9, 2014 election, seeking to nullify its result. Mr. Aregbesola of the All Progressives Congress won the election.
Reacting to the judgement, the governor said in a sane society Mr. Omisore would not have approached the election tribunal because there was no redress to be sought in the first place.
“It is pertinent to state here that ab initio, those who went to the tribunal knew that the petition lacked any substance whatsoever. It is a sheer waste of the time of the judiciary. And they knew,” he said in a statement by his media aide, Semiu Okanlawon.
“One is appalled by the fact that a candidate who knew that the entire state rejected him and the political party he represents; performed abysmally in the build-up to the election, during the election and compounded his woes by failing to meet up with the required deadline set by the rule of the court, would be taunting us with any fake victory.”
Mr. Aregbesola congratulated the people of Osun on the victory, saying it was a confirmation of their dogged desire for good governance as demonstrated by the four years of the first term of his administration.
He said, “We must salute the courage of our people that in the face of overwhelming intimidation, harassment of unimaginable proportion, they stood by their government and ensured re-election. This is a further affirmation of the fact that any government that makes the people the centre of its policies will always find the people solidly behind it,” he said.
Mr. Aregbesola further re-assured the people that his government would not relent in its zeal to make Osun the hub of the most profitable commercial centre not only in the South-West but in Nigeria as a whole.
He stated, “Our target is to make this small corner of the earth a centre of reference in all that is great and elegant. The history of our place tells us that civilization was not alien to us and that indeed, our people were epitome of innovation, technology, industry and enterprise.
“We must revamp this and make our people proud again among other nations of the world,” he concluded.