Allegation of bias against me baseless – Ex-Osun REC

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The outgoing Resident Electoral Commissioner in Osun State, Rufus Akeju, has described as spurious the allegations of bias levelled against him in the course of performing his duty.

A statement in Osogbo on Tuesday by the media aide to Governor Rauf Aregbesola quoted Akeju to have spoken during a farewell visit to the governor on Monday.

The Coalition of Political Parties in Oyo State on Monday protested the redeployment of Akeju to the state.

The CPP accused the REC of being a card-carrying member of the All Progressives Congress and that his redeployment to Oyo was to assist the APC in winning the next year poll in the state.

The REC had also faced similar accusations in Osun, where the Peoples Democratic Party on many occasions accused him of being a member of the APC.

The Independent National Electoral Commission had to temporarily redeploy him to Kogi State in July thus denying him the chance to preside over the August 9 governorship election in Osun.

The REC however said on Tuesday that his accusers had failed to provide evidence to back up their claims of partisanship.

He said, “There was nothing that they did not say to make sure that our image and reputation were tarnished. But I thank God for His mercies. They alleged that I am a card-carrying member of a particular party.

“We thank God that at the end of the day, all their allegations were unfounded and false. We are happy that we have come and served meritoriously. We wish Osun the best among the committee of states, and long live Nigeria.”

Aregbesola used the opportunity of the visit by Akeju to charge the INEC to ensure credibility in the 2015 general elections.

The governor admonished the electoral umpire not to fall short of the expectations of the people of the country, who are looking forward to an election where the majority of votes would count.

The governor also urged the electoral commission to use electronic card reader for the conduct of the 2015 elections. He said this would further enhance the credibility of the poll.

Aregbesola said, “In spite of everything, INEC has done its bit by bringing civility and honour to the conduct of the last August 9 governorship election in the state.

“The election that we had in Osun was about the best conducted by INEC; not because we won, but because the process was seen to be free and fair by all parties.

“The deployment of the machine, aside from making the election credible, will foil attempts by fraudulent people to clone the voter card. The card reader will bring credibility and ensure that the electoral wishes of Nigerians are not jeopardised.

“Our destiny as a people lies on how best we can mobilise and defend the common good of the people.”

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