The Osun Independent Electoral Commission (OSIEC), under the administration of Governor Gboyega Oyetola has fixed October 15 for the local government election.
Chairman of the commission, Segun Oladitan made this known on Monday during a news conference in Osogbo capital of Osun State.
He said: “The State House of Assembly had recently enacted Osun State Independent Electoral Commission Law 2022 which had been duly assented to by Mr. Governor.
“As at date, all the inhibiting factors and circumstances have been ameliorated, thereby making the coast very clear for the Commission to conduct Local Government Election Elections. All previous laws on Local Government Elections in the State had been repealed.
“The commission is happy to inform you and the general public that the Local Government Elections in Osun State of Nigeria shall be conducted on the 15th day of October, 2022.”
Speaking on the modalities to be adopted for the election, Oladitan said: “You would kindly recollect that when this Commission conducted elections in January 2018, it was based on the parliamentary system.
“I have the pleasure to inform you that the elections we are conducting this 2022 shall be on a presidential system whereby Chairmen of Local Government Councils shall be elected directly and the Ward Councillors shall be elected separately.”
He added the Commission had been making necessary contacts with relevant stakeholders and carrying out in-house preparations for the exercise.
Meanwhile, the Osun governor-elect, Ademola Adeleke, and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have however kicked against the move by the incumbent governor, saying it is illegal and contravened the law.
The party’s statement partly reads; “Despite being constituted close to two years ago with huge resources expended on the commission chairman, the secretary, and staff, the commission has failed to conduct any local government election since then, until now when the Oyetola-led APC administration in Osun State has been voted out of power.
“We affirm that under the Electoral Act 2022, a notice of any election must be given not later than 360 days before the election, and nomination of candidates for the election must not be later than 180 days before the election, while publication of names shall be a period not later than 150 days before the election.
“It should be noted that by virtue of the Second Schedule Paragraphs 11 and 12 of the 1999 Constitution as amended, no State electoral law can have precedence over the Electoral Act.
“Moreso, the Electoral Act 2022 has made it clear that every State Electoral Commission must comply with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 in conducting local government elections.
“We are, therefore, alerting members of the public to rise against another wastage and conduit pipe through which the resources of Osun people are being siphoned, the statement affirmed, warning that no product of illegality will be allowed to stand by the incoming Adeleke administration.
“The party further advised Oyetola and OSSIEC to arrange a team of legal experts to review the legal stipulations so as to be properly guided and avoid running into a serious legal ditch that will not only bring an embarrassment to whoever may be the target beneficiaries of the planned illegal election but also further put the State in a serious financial mess,” it said.
The party called on Governor Oyetola to channel the funds meant for the illegal election towards settling arrears of salaries of workers and pensioners in the state