The gubernatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the just concluded Ondo state governorship election, Mr. Eyitayo Gegede said that the Independent National Electoral Commission was not fair to him.
He added that the commission is being manipulated by the power that be to win elections for the All Progressives Congress.
Narrating what led to his inability to fly during the election, Gegede said INEC did not publish his name on its website or other means like others, and election materials didn’t get to him even a day to the election.
Since he had to solve the internal crisis between the two factions of the party, he didn’t have enough time to campaign and his request to extend the election by possibly, two weeks was turned down by the INEC.
Complaining on how INEC contributed to his failure, Gegede said: “It wasn’t fair because a day to election, i was not given the voters register, it wasn’t fair because a day to election, i was not allowed to submit my party agents list for myself, it wasn’t fair because a day to election my name was not hoisted on the website of INEC as a candidate, a day to election my name was not published in all INEC notices board. Two or three days to election, a debate was conducted for all the candidates and i was not given an opportunity to be there.
“It is not what i think, it is what other people think. I ask other people, was it fair? if you gave my other opponents more than 30 days to campaign, you published their names, you gave them voters register more than 30 days to election, you took the list of their agents more than 30 days and you were trying to do this to me a day before election. I said postpone it so i can have a week or two to cover my ground and you said no. The problem i had is that INEC is being manipulated.”
Gegede continued that though he lost the election, the people showed him so much love and he can work without fear on the street.
He also complained of the Supreme court case and how it affected his campaign. The PDP candidate stressed that the election was only won for now.
He said “It took a lot of problem to get my name restored to the ballot paper. We were in the Supreme court on Tuesday when it ordered court of appeal to deliver judgement whichever way it goes. On Wednesday, judgement was delivered, Wednesday night my name was restored, the following Thursday, we were back at the Supreme Court at the instance of our advisory and that same Thursday, campaign closed effectively, i just couldn’t campaign. Friday there should be no campaign and Saturday was election. Those were the circumstances in which i went to the election.
“Despite that, the people have shown tremendous love and affection for us. Yes we lost the governorship place for now but we won the heart of the people. We can walk on the street of the towns in the 10 local government and people will rejoice, for me that is democracy.