The Chairman, Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission (OYSIEC), Aare Isiaka Olagunju, has explained why the commission has not fixed a date for the local government elections.
Mr Olagunju said lack of trust in the commission have been responsible for voter’s apathy during previous elections organized by the commission.
However, he said the commission would continually dialogue with political parties and other stakeholders in the state in order to achieve an all-inclusive local government council election.
According to the OYSIEC boss, plans are underway for innovations that would be deployed to harness situation reports from various polling units on elections day as a way of making the election process credible and transparent.
Olagunju made the disclosures while featuring on a radio program in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital city on Thursday.
He added that, as a result of efforts made since his team came on board, the perceptions of the populace on OYSIEC based on experiences is fading gradually, following the ongoing trust and confidence-building campaign of the commission to various stakeholders in the state.
Olagunju, who emphasised the need for adequate preparations for hitch-free elections, said concerted efforts would be made to ensure the election is truly competitive.
He said the commission has been enjoying its independence as a commission, particularly in terms of support as well as and necessary support from the government, while appealing to the people to believe in his team at the commission for a free, fair and credible council election soon.
He said “Picking a date for the election is not a challenge but voter’s apathy. We are glad that people have started having a change of mind in this regard based on visits to various stakeholders in the state.
“History has it that some people have conducted local government council elections in the state where opposition parties emerged victorious in the election, and this I want the populace to believe is very much possible to repeat itself.
“In fairness, there is no interference of any kind. We are independent in terms of operation. We are getting the necessary support from the government and I can tell you that elections will hold very soon.
“We are not relenting in the areas of public awareness and sensitization to achieve all-inclusive elections. I want to appeal to the people of the state to have that trust and confidence in Olagunju led OYSIEC team that elections to be conducted would be truly competitive, free, fair and transparent.