Mr Owolabi Salis
The gubernatorial candidate of the Alliance for Democracy, (AD) in Lagos State, Mr Owolabi Salis, has rejected Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s election victory as declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
He made this statement at a press briefing in Lagos, saying that the results of the election held on March 9, were laced with multiple voting, intimidation, collation fraud among other offences.
Salis said that INEC’s declaration of Sanwo-Olu as the governor-elect of the state showed how debased Nigerian democracy had become. He denounced the poll stating that it was totally unacceptable to him and, vowed to mount a legal challenge.
Salis described INEC as incompetent, alleging that it was the major player used by the ruling party to actualise its plan.
“A lot of miscounting was done; there was low turn-out of voters as a result of threat and violence and APC control of INEC official and use of security personnel to the advantage of the ruling party. There were also multiple thumb printing, uncollected voters cards use by thugs against the electorate and other forms of illegality,” he said.
He emphasised that a lot of miscounting was equally done against AD, making it appear as if the party does not have a voice in Lagos. He alleged that there was a place where AD scored 17 votes at a particular polling unit, but he claimed that only four votes was recorded for the party.
“The poll was allegedly hijacked by hoodlums and unidentified uniformed men during the exercise; they were moving in various vehicles scaring electorate away. At the collation stage, a lot of misappropriation was done in favour of the ruling party,” he said.
He stated that Lagosians were still unhappy over how some group of thugs moved around during the exercise and hijacked the process. The candidate described the leadership in Lagos as self-imposed.
Salis maintained that the results declared had been compromised and did not reflect the people’s wish.
“The people of Lagos have been denied, ripped off their mandate. The future of their children is in the hands of an individual.”
He stressed that he would use all legal means to undo the alleged injustice done to the people of the state.
He said: “Lagos must be freed from systemic slavery; it has endured in the hands of certain individuals.”
He stated that the ruling party had stolen the future of the children. “The youths are exploited and used for electoral violence. Where in the world do you see people buying votes, giving out bags of rice and other items just to exploit the less privileged.
“I know that the judiciary in the state is in the pocket of the one powerful individual but we continue to try until we get justice for posterity by engaging electoral lawyers in the situation of Lagos.
“I am not accepting the result of the governorship election. It is a complete fraud.
“This is not an election and I totally reject it. A lot of miscounting was done against AD; they even tried to relegate us by putting us in the sixth position.
“I do not believe Sanwo-Olu won a clear contest,” he maintained.
He vowed to challenge the outcome of the election at the election tribunal, expressing optimism of getting justice.
“I am going to court. I have overwhelming evidence and will get lawyers that will handle the election matters to look into those irregularities committed against my party in the just-concluded elections.
“It is very easy to win the case when you have enough evidence,” Salis stated.
Salis added that despite all that had happened, he would still remain relevant politically and not relent in empowering the masses.”