Ondo postpones LG election indefinitely

Ondo postpones LG election indefinitely

The Ondo State Independent Electoral Commission (ODIEC) has postponed the local government election in the state indefinitely.

The Chairman of ODIEC, Dr Joseph Aremo, stated this in a stakeholders’ meeting on Monday in Akure.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that election into the 18 local government areas and 33 local council development areas in the state was earlier rescheduled to be conducted on July 13.

However, a state High Court in June declared that the 33 LCDAs created by the late Gov. Rotimi Akeredolu was unconstitutional.

The court held that the law passed by the House of Assembly creating the LCDAs was signed by the late Gov. Akeredolu in Ibadan, outside the state.

Aremo, however, said that non-compliance of political parties in line with electoral process caused the postponement of the conduct of the election.

“The political parties did not submit their nomination forms, nor did they comply with the adjusted timetable from the last meeting.

“As a precursor to the conduct of the election, between June 26 and June 28, political parties were expected to submit the lists of their agents.

“In the last meeting with the leaders of political parties, the commission informed them that the July 13 date set for the election was sacrosanct.

“We also stated that we would not be changing the date,” he said.

Aremo said that if only two parties were prepared for the election, the poll would still have been conducted.

“At the meeting, they all agreed to comply with the guidelines and timetable.

“However, as I speak, not a single party has complied. No valid nomination form was submitted,” he stated.

The ODIEC Chairman said that consequently, it was incumbent upon the commission to review the entire process and decide on the next step.

He said that the commission was committed to conducting an acceptable election.

“Our concern is to conduct free and fair elections at the grassroots level that will lead to the emergence of local leadership.

“But we realised that there is non-compliance with the rules and regulations. This led us to the decision to postpone the election,” he stated.

Reacting to the postponement, the state chairman of the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC), Mr Olaoluwa Adesanya, said the decision of the council members not to participate in the election was reached during a meeting of all political parties in the state.

“We agreed among ourselves that no political party should submit nomination forms because we want to meet with the state governor to discuss with him and understand some happenings in the government.

“We knew that the commission would have nothing to work with without the submission of nomination forms.

“ODIEC is an independent body, and in this aspect, it is a matter between the government and the political parties,” he stated.