From BAMIGBOLA GBOLAGUNTE, Osogbo
Osun State governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola has raised the alarm over alleged plans by some politicians in the state to rig the August 9 governorship election. To this end, Governor Aregbesola has called on security agents and members of the public to be vigilant to prevent manipulation of election.
In a state broadcast yesterday, Governor Aregbesola who called on all the people of the state to participate in the voters’ registration and review exercise stressed the need for the people to protect their votes during election to avoid rigging.
He said, “Because elections empower the people, there will be resistance from those who want to keep the people in slavery and bondage. They are agents of destabilisation and confusion who would rather wish that elections do not take place or at best manipulate the peoples wish and prevent them from exercising their God-given right to choose their own leader.”
He added “They will want to short-circuit the process and pre-determine the end result from the beginning by keeping as many people as possible away from the voters’ register. We want to warn such people that the law enforcement agencies will be alive to their responsibility and take all necessary actions to make the exercise hitch-free and a resounding success.”
He urged the people to be resolute in their stand for democracy, saying, “Our people must register for election, vote and make their votes count. They should not be intimidated or scared; and should not be despondent.”
Meanwhile, the state government declared yesterday public holiday to allow residents of the state participate in the voter’s review exercise, which kicked off in the state on Friday.
Director, Bureau of Communication and Strategy, office of the Governor, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon said the holiday was to allow the people participate actively in the voters verification and permanent voters card collection exercise.
Also, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state has appealed to all the citizens of the state to avail themselves of the opportunity offered by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to get the new permanent voter’s cards.
In another development, the state chapter of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has urged the people to avail themselves of the opportunity offered by the voters review exercise to obtain voters’ cards to participate in the next election.