Members of All Progressive Congress, APC, on Monday staged a protest on the streets of Offa and Ilorin in Kwara State demanding for their mandate allegedly stolen.
The chairman of the Kwara Independent Electoral Commission, KWASIEC, Uthman Ajidagba had declared Abdulwaheed Olanipekun of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, winner of the chairmanship seat of the Offa local government council in a re-run election conducted on Saturday.
Olanipekun was said to have clinched the seat with 35,937 votes against Saheed Popoola, the APC candidate who got 20,161 votes.
However, the protesters who occupied major streets of Offa and Ilorin, had two demands – they want to be given the official results of the election and they also want to be witnesses to the collation.
Speaking with reporters, spokesman for the group, Comrade Iji, said after the election, they approached the local government collation centres where the results collated at the wards would be compiled for final announcement of the winner but were told that the returning officer who is also the local government electoral officer of KWSIEC was no where to be found.
“He absconded and we waited there till about 10pm before the materials were moved to the headquarters of KWSIEC here in Ilorin that night. They said we should return on Sunday morning by 10.00 am, but surprisingly by around 5.00 am we started hearing from Kwara Radio, the KWSIEC chairman announcing the false results. It was not in his place to announce any results,” he said.
Iji added that the party will not accept the results announced as authentic as it is sure that it won the said position.
The interim national publicity secretary of the APC, Lai Mohammed, had described the results as “cooked up” and assured that it will be fought to a logical conclusion using the instrumentality of the law.
“There is no iota of doubt that the APC won the elections. It is common knowledge that if the elections were conducted 10 times, APC will beat the PDP 10 times. Offa people know who they voted for and are ready to defend their votes. Therefore, any attempt to thwart the will of the people will be resisted to the hilt,” he said.
The rally commenced around 10 .00 am at the former Congress for Progressive Change, CPC’s office, Offa road, Ilorin.