Ekiti State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose has reacted to the report submitted by the Army panel set up to look into allegations of unprofessional conduct against soldiers during the Ekiti, Osun, Rivers and Akwa Ibom State governorship elections, saying; “For all intent and purposes, the report can only useful to the army and one is not surprised because the panel must do the biddings of those who set it up.”
The governor, who reiterated that he won the election fair and square, said Nigerians should also ask questions as to whether it was the military that assisted the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) to win the Presidential, National Assembly and State House of Assembly elections last year.
According to a statement issued by the governor’s Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, “reacting to the panel report was just to put the records straight as all legal avenues regarding election into the office of a state governor had been explored by the All Progressives Congress (APC) and judgements entered against the party by the Tribunal, Appeal Court and the Supreme Court, which is the final court on governorship election matters.”
“As at today, dispute on the governorship election has become functus officio because as a general rule, once a tribunal has reached a final decision in respect to the matter that is before it in accordance with its enabling statute, that decision cannot be revisited because the tribunal has changed its mind, made an error within jurisdiction or because there has been a change of circumstances,” he said.
The governor said Nigerians should also be reminded that the US Department of State and other International Observers, which observed the election, noted in their report that “the process was credible and efficient, and that security forces collaborated effectively in providing a safe environment free of major incidents.”
He pointed out that “the International Observers could be said to be the only organizations whose position on the election cannot be said to have been influenced by partisanship or monetary benefits because they have observed elections in other countries of the world and provided credible reports.”
Governor Fayose said if foreign observers could commend the military men that participated in the election for providing a safe environment free of major incidents, it remained to be seen the rationale behind the same institution that was hailed by credible foreign observers indicting itself just to satisfy the present political expediency.
He said; “Now that the military has indicted itself, goodluck to them. Meanwhile, we await whatever hidden agenda behind this self-indictment.”