The Peoples Democratic Party has lashed out at the All Progressives Congress in Osun State for criticising former President Olusegun Obasanjo after his comments on the conduct of the last governorship election in the state.
The former president, in his open letter on Sunday, scolded INEC on its performance during the governorship election in Osun State last year, describing the rerun election as unnecessary.
“The unnecessary rerun, if viewed as a test for general elections, would lead people to expect incidences of deliberately contrived, broken or non-working voting machines or card readers, confusion of voters as to their voting stations, inadequate supply of voting materials to designated places, long line to discourage voters and turning blind eyes to favour the blue-eyed political party of INEC because the commission’s hands will be tied to enable the hatchet men and women to perform their unwholesome assignment,” Mr Obasanjo had stated.
But, in a statement on Monday, the APC’s Director of Publicity, Research and Strategy in Osun, Kunle Oyatomi, chided the former president for his comments on the election.
“It’s a pity that our respected former president is using the privilege of his position to express an opinion that is sub judice to a case that’s already in court and is currently being litigated,” said Mr Ayatomi.
“His comment on the Osun governorship election of last September is a matter that should be left to (the) court to decide.”
However, the deputy national publicity secretary of the PDP, Diran Odeyemi, in a statement on Tuesday, said Mr Obasanjo did not say anything new about Osun governorship election. He said all that transpired, especially during the September 27 Rerun Election, was already in public domain.
He commended Mr Obasanjo for standing by the truth and for not joining the multitude to perpetrate evil, even at the risk of his life.
Mr Odeyemi said beyond what Mr Obasanjo said in his statement, the Nigerian Bar Association monitors and several international and local observers in their reports all gave vivid details of how INEC colluded with the ruling party to rig Osun’s poll.
“The statement by APC and an aide to Ogbeni Aregbesola, in reaction to what our respected former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo said on the last Osun governorship election should not have ordinarily attracted such an outburst from those that stole the collective mandate of Osun people during the last election,” Mr Odeyemi’s statement read.
“The world knows APC colluded with INEC to rig the last Osun poll. Reports by election observers exposed all their atrocities. Why the attack on the elder statesman that observed that Nigeria was heading towards a precipice under the Buhari and cried out?
“We advise APC, President Buhari and INEC to see the warning signs and back down on their plans to rig the general elections as done during Osun governorship poll. We also call for end of attacks on Chief Obasanjo, who has remained the conscience of our nation by the enemies of democracy.”