The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) gubernatorial candidate in Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, has said that the people’s will would prevail in Saturday’s Governorship and House of Assembly Elections.
Makinde said this shortly after casting his vote at Ward 11, Unit 001, Abayomi Area, Iwo Road, Ibadan.
The governorship candidate who cast his vote at 9:33 am also lauded the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies on the peaceful and early commencement of the election.
“From the reports we have been getting from various places in the state, it has been smooth, peaceful and orderly. Also the early arrival of voting materials at the various centres is impressive given the logistic problems that occurred during the Presidential Election.
“I must also commend the high number of electorate who have come to cast their votes, this shows the people’s faith in the electoral process,” he said.
In his remarks, an accredited election observer, Mr Azawua Oluyole, commended the early arrival of INEC ad-hoc staff and security agents.
Oluyole, a domestic observer from the Christian Council of Nigeria, said that the party agents had been at their best behaviour by their peaceful and orderly conduct.
According to him, the electorate at the poling unit have also exhibited a high sense of maturity and orderliness.
He said that the conduct would ensure a credible and transparent election in the state.
A News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) correspondent also noticed the presence of operatives of EFCC and a long line of voters on queue at the polling unit
Similarly, former Gov. Adebayo Alao-Akala, the ADP governorship candidate, who stepped down for Chief Adebayo Adelabu of APC, cast his vote at exactly 8.20am at Ward 10, Unit 13, Taara, in Ogbomoso North Local Government Area.
He commended INEC on punctuality, but said the turnout out of voters was not impressive enough.
“Politically, we are peace-loving people in Ogbomoso. INEC has done very well on its prompt arrival at the polling units, I commend them on this. The turnout is not impressive enough, but I am very sure people will still turnout as the voting continues,” he said.
At Oyo, the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemu 111, cast his vote at 9: 30am at Ward 1, Unit 8 Oke – Afin, Oyo.
Speaking to journalists after casting his vote, Adeyemi said that Oyo town had been peaceful while security personnel had been deployed to patrol the town .
He said that so far there had been no report of violence in Oyo town and its environs. Alaafin thanked INEC and security agents for a job well done and ensuring that the election was peaceful , free and fair..
Adeyemi urged the contestants to accept the result of the election when it was declared.
Alhaji Sharafadeen Alli, governorship candidate of Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), who stepped down for Makinde of the PDP, cast his vote by 10:04 at Ward 3, Unit 22, Okearemo, Yemetu area, Ibadan North.
He commended INEC on punctuality but decried some irregularities and low turnout in his area compared to that of last week.
“There is no enough ballot papers in some places, in spite of that we had snatching of ballot papers by some hoodlums.
The turnout is very low and worse than that of the last elections, I urge people to try and come out to vote, their votes count and this will ensure peace, progress in the state,” he said.
Also at Ward 12, Unit 24, Tunakin Bodija in Ibadan North, voting and accreditation started at 9:25 with good turnout, especially women.
AAC, APC, PDP, Accord party agents as well as two security men were seen.
Also at Ward 12, Unit 32, Methodist Primary School 1, Bodija, Ibadan, voting and accreditation was going on smoothly at 9:30. Many were seen casting their votes
The electorate at Ward 17, Polling units 73, 74 and 75, Oluyole Extension in Ibadan, commended INEC for starting accreditation and voting procedure on time.
Mr Gboyega Adebunmi a former permanent Secretary in Oyo State and Mr Joseph Benjamin said though INEC officials were on ground as at 8:00 am, there was low turn out of voters.
They said the improvement in the conduct of the exercise was commendable compared to the February 23 presidential poll which started at 12:30 pm.
According to the duo, the turnout at the last election was more when compared to governorship and House of Assembly election.
Some of the party agents, Mr Ikechwuku Paul of the PDP and Mr Ojo Olayiwola of the APC, who spoke to NAN, stated that the exercise was going smoothly.(NAN)