THE election of Congregation Representatives into the Governing Council of Federal University, Oye (FUOYE), Ekiti, scheduled to hold on Friday was cancelled following an allegation of manipulation and rigging by members.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the results of the election were declared and later cancelled by the Chairman of the Electoral Committee, Kester Ojokheta.
The chairman, while justifying the cancellation, said that the total number of votes cast 955, was higher than 440 eligible voters.
He explained that the objective of the election was to elect two representatives from both academic and non-academic staff into the governing council of the institution as stipulated in the establishment Act of the university.
Earlier, Vice Chancellor of the university, Kayode Soremekun, said there would be a maximum of eight nominations from both the teaching and non-teaching cadres, which was objected to by the majority of congregants.
The congregants though raised objections to the vice chancellor’s decision but were denied to express their views as he declined to recognise anyone to speak.
Seven congregants comprising one teaching staff and six non-academic staff were nominated to contest for the election.
They include: Dosu Malomo,(Teaching cadre) while Adelani Efuntade, Abayomi Oshatimi, Samson Durojaye, Usman, Ayodele Fatuase and L.A Eni are Non-Teaching cadre.
After reading the nominations, the vice chancellor announced the closing of nominations which attracted stiff resistance from members of the congregation, who alleged that most of the nominees were his close associates.
But after an extensive, rowdy and shouting session, the vice chancellor announced the extension of nomination to 10 and three additional members were nominated.
The three added nominees were Toibudeen Sanmi (Teaching cadre), Ademiju Aganga (Teaching cadre) and Victor Ige (Non-Teaching cadre).
While the voting process which was conducted through the secret ballot was ongoing, some members of the congregation raised accusations that the Director of Administration in the office of the Vice-Chancellor, Olatunbosun Odusanya, had allegedly dropped some ballot papers in one of the ballot boxes.
The allegation was reported to the Vice Chancellor and the Chairman of the electoral committee but was ignored, as nothing was done to either verify or confirm the allegation.
At the end of the voting process, Chairman of the Electoral Committee, Kester Ojokheta, announced the results with L.A Eni, polling 85 votes, Abayomi Oshatimi had 29 votes, Usman polled 13 votes, Ayodele Fatuase polled 105 votes and Ademiju Aganga had 307 votes.
Others were Dosu Malomo who scored 148 votes, Victor Ige 162 vote, Adelani Efuntade 79 votes, Samson Durojaye 2 votes and Toibudeen Sanmi polled 25 votes.
When the results were announced, Aganga and Dr. Victor Ige had the highest votes cast.
The electoral committee chairman, however, observed that the total number votes cast (955) was higher than the 440 total number of eligible voters and consequently cancelled the outcome of the election.
Speaking with NAN after the election, the electoral committee chairman said he was disappointed with the behaviour of the academic staff of the university towards the outcome of the election.
“I never compromised the rules and regulations of the election, in spite of the fact that my close friend was leading in the election, I cancelled it for fairness.
“If I was biased, I could have pronounced my friend winner of the election. More so, it is an internal affair and it should be handled internally without the media interfering.
“Most of the people complaining about the process of the election and result were my friends and I was only appointed by the Vice Chancellor to oversee the election.
“I do not have ulterior motives because I am on sabbatical leave at FUOYE and once my leave is over, I will return to the University of Ibadan which is my base,” he told NAN on telephone.