The election of Congregation Representatives into the Governing Council of Federal University, Oye, Ekiti, was on Friday cancelled following allegation of manipulation and rigging by members.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that the results of the election were declared and later cancelled by the Chairman of the Electoral Committee, Prof. Kester Ojokheta.
Ojokheta, while justifying the cancellation, said the total number of votes cast, being 955, was higher than the 440 eligible voters.
He explained that the objective of the election was to elect two representatives from both academic and non academic staff into the institution’s Governing Council as stipulated in the establishment Act of the university.
Earlier, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Kayode Soremekun, said there would be a maximum of eight nominations from both the teaching and non teaching cadres, which was objected to by majority of the congregants.
Seven congregants comprising one teaching staff and six non academic staff were nominated to contest for the election.
They include: Dr. Dosu Malomo (teaching cadre), while Mr. Adelani Efuntade, Dr. Abayomi Oshatimi, Mr. Samson Durojaye, Mr. Usman, Mr. Ayodele Fatuase and Mr L.A Eni are non-teaching cadre.
After reading the nominations, the vice chancellor announced the closing of nominations and this attracted stiff resistance from members of the congregation, who alleged that most of the nominees were close associates of the VC.
The Vice Chancellor later announced the extension of nomination to 10, and three additional members were nominated.
The three added nominees are, Dr. Toibudeen Sanmi (teaching cadre); Prof. Ademiju Aganga (teaching cadre) and Dr. Victor Ige (non-teaching cadre).
At the end of the voting process, chairman of the Electoral Committee, Prof. Kester Ojokheta, announced the results, with Mr L.A. Eni, polling 85 votes, Dr. Abayomi Oshatimi had 29 votes; Mr. Usman polled 13 votes; Mr. Ayodele Fatuase polled 105 votes and Prof. Ademiju Aganga had 307 votes.
Others are, Dr. Dosu Malomo, 148 votes; Dr. Victor Ige, 162 votes; Mr. Adelani Efuntade, 79 votes; Mr. Samson Durojaye, 2 votes and Dr. Toibudeen Sanmi, 25 votes.
The electoral committee chairman, however, observed that the total number of votes cast (955) was higher than the 440 total number of eligible voters and consequently cancelled the outcome of the election.
Speaking with NAN while reacting to the allegation, the chairman said he was disappointed with the behaviour of the academic staff of the university towards the outcome of the election.
“I never compromise the rules and regulations of the election, in spite of the fact that my close friend was leading in the election. I cancelled it for fairness.
“If I was biased, I could have pronounced my friend winner of the election. More so, it is an internal affair and it should be handled internally without media interference.
“Most of the people complaining about the process of the election and result are my friends and I was only appointed by the Vice Chancellor to oversee the election.
“I do not have ulterior motives because I am on sabbatical leave to FUOYE and once my leave is over, I will return to the University of Ibadan, which is my base,”he told NAN on telephone.
Some staff of the university who participated in the election told NAN under condition of anonymity, said, “This cancellation of congregation election where 440 accredited voters were supposed to vote is an indication that all is not well in FUOYE.
“This just confirmed that some people are determined to disrupt the process, hence dropping ballot papers in one of the ballot boxes because they knew that, once the number of votes is higher than the accredited voters, such will happen.
“We raise alarm, but it was ignored, it is well.”