Respect the Law, Osun APC Tells Obasanjo

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Osun State has advised former President Olusegun Obasanjo to respect the law and avoid making comments that are subjudice.

Obasanjo, as part of his statement titled: “Points for concern and action” at the weekend, alluded to last September’s Osun State governorship election as “conclusive but declared inconclusive” by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) “despite all advice to the contrary.”

But in a statement issued yesterday by its Director of Publicity, Research and Strategy, Mr. Kunle Oyatomi, the APC in Osun State said: “It is a pity that our respected former president is using the privilege of his position to express an opinion that is subjudice to a case that is already before the election petition tribunal and is currently being litigated.

“His comment on the Osun State governorship election is a matter that should be left to the court to decide.

“Expressing an opinion on it at this stage is not only unlawful; it is a glaring disrespect for the rule and process of the law.

“This is more so because ex-President Obasanjo is using that case which is still disputed to illustrate unfairly his allegation that INEC cannot be trusted to run a free, fair and credible presidential election next month.

“We advise Chief Obasanjo to limit his comment on a matter that is subjudice, otherwise, he would be laying a precedent that would be unhelpful to the rule of law.

“Under our Electoral Law and the provisions of our Constitution, INEC has the responsibility to conduct elections in the country and it is also empowered to declare an election valid or invalid if there are sufficient lawful reasons to do so.

“Osun State’s case is not the first such instance of invalidation of a particular election which is deemed to be inconsistent with the laws of the Federation as stipulated by the Constitution and the Electoral Law.

“Neither the APC nor the PDP or even Obasanjo, can make a pronouncement on whether or not an election is conclusive or inconclusive after INEC has made a pronouncement. Only the court has such powers.

“Obasanjo’s comment is not only unsolicited, it is an unacceptable interference in the process of the court of which he has no legal right to do”