•Council Bosses, Interested Candidates Lobby Leaders
Having foreseen the imminent failure awaiting the 30 local government council chairmen in Osun State at the Court of Appeal sitting in Ibadan, Oyo State, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leadership in the state has reportedly started strategizing on how to appoint caretaker committee members for each of the councils.
Investigations revealed that the ruling PDP leadership has started holding nocturnal meetings on the best way to go about the appointments.
It would be recalled that opposition political parties in the state attempted to stop the December 15, 2007 local government elections, through which the council bosses were elected by filing a suit before an Osogbo High Court.
The plaintiff in the suit, Action Congress (AC), National Conscience Party (CNP) and the All Nigerians Peoples Party (ANPP), claimed that the State Independent Electoral Commission (OSSIEC) had not given them the required days’ notice, as laid down by the law.
But the Chief Judge of the state, Justice Fasaasi Ogunsola ruled at the eve of the said election that the electoral body should go ahead with the conduct of the polls, a situation that forced the opposition political parties to boycott the elections.
The election was then conducted by the OSSIEC for the PDP candidates alone, and the party swept all the councillorship and chairmanship seats in the controversial election.
Dissatisfied with the ruling of the lower court, the opposition parties faced the Court of Appeal, sitting in Ibadan, asking the appellate court to upturn the ruling and order the state’s electoral body to conduct a fresh election for all the councils’ seats.
Indications have however shown that the spirit of the opposition parties members was very high, as they were expecting that the judgment of the appellate court would be in their favour, having complied with the constitution through legal steps.
It was gathered that all efforts by the PDP-led government to influence the appellate court has not yielded any positive result, a situation that forced its move to plan B.
At a nocturnal meeting held at the palace of a prominent traditional ruler in Osun East Senatorial District of the state recently, Osun Defender gathered that the agenda of the meeting centered on how to appoint caretaker members.
It was learnt that the monarch, whose palace was used as venue of the meeting with Oyinlola, council bosses and some party leaders allegedly in attendance, reportedly told the gathering that his investigations have shown that the council bosses would be dropped by the appellate court.
After contribution from participants at the meeting, it was reportedly agreed that the council bosses should start perfecting their files in case of any eventuality.
A source at the meeting revealed that the party leaders and council bosses have been asked to go back to their various council areas and start their home work on who to appoint into the committees.
However, this medium learnt that some of the interested candidates in the positions have started lobbying the monarch and party leaders in their areas for the positions.
A reliable source further informed this medium that some council bosses have started fixing their plugs and smoothening their rough edges by settling their political godfathers and some political gladiators with council funds, in order to get their approval with ease.
By kazeem mohammed