Politics

Outcome of Ekiti LG Polls Boosts Women Participation in Politics

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Ekiti State conducted local government elections on Saturday December 2, across its 16 local government areas (LGAs) and 22 local Council Development Areas (LCDAs). Thirteen political parties participated in the elections according to the chairman, Ekiti state Independent Electoral Commission (EKSIEC), Jus- tice Cornelius Akintayo (rtd), They are Action Alliance (AA), Action Democratic Congress (ADC), African Democratic Party (ADP), All Progressives Congress (APC), Labour Party (LP), New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Peopless Redemption Party (PRP) and Zenith Labour Party (ZLP).

The election was described as violence–free in the 2,195polling units where it took place. A total of 56 women were elected into various offices during the election. The state electoral commission, while announcing the results, declared that the ruling APC won the 38 chairmanship and 177 councillorship seats. The election produced seven new female council chairpersons, 16 female vice chairpersons and 33 female councilors. The state governor Biodun Oyebanji, who voted at his Ward 6, unit 003, Okelele Street, Ikogosi-Ekiti commended the EKSIEC for the peaceful conduct of the polls.

He also expressed satisfaction that the people at the grassroots were able to elect leaders of their choice at the local government level and also at the 177 wards without intimidation. The governor also identified the impact of local government elections to the delivery of dividends of democracy at the grassroots, saying: “I am also happy because the people on their own have the opportunity to choose their representatives at the local government and at the ward levels.”

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The outcome of the election was also described as a remarkable development because of the unprecedented huge number of female candidates who vied for various positions. This includes seven female candidates for the chairmanship; 16 candidates for vice chairmanship and 33 candidates for councillorship positions. The development, according to Governor Oyebanji, is not only heart-warming, but speaks to the fact democracy is taking firm root in Ekiti State. The deputy governor, Chief Mrs. Monisade Afuye, said the conduct of the polls by EKSIEC portrays a radical and remarkable development and signaled loud testimonies of tremendous improvement on the 2021 polls.

Mrs. Afuye, who made the submission, while casting her vote at Unit 003, Atiba/AafinWard in Ikere Ekiti, commended voters in her local government of origin, Ikere Local Government Area. She also applauded voters across the state for demonstrating confidence and trust in the electoral process, by their impressive participation in the polls Her words: “Going by what we have seen and information across the state, the process has been ad- judged peaceful and transparent. The SIEC officials and observers were on ground on time and that further propelled the voters to come out to cast their votes for their preferred candidates.

This is highly commendable. “The atmosphere was serene and voters were not being coerced to vote for a particular candidate. They were given the freedom to vote for candidates of their choice, which is the beauty of democracy. “With all these, those who will emerge in the election will know that they will be there to serve the people, so that our people can be- come more interested to participate in elections, especially the local government polls.” The deputy governor also praised security agents for their remarkable roles in the election. On his part, the chairman of Ajoni LCDA, Prince Micheal Olugbemi, described the turn out in his community as impressive.

He said: “The turnout is very impressive in Ajoni LCDA. I give kudos to SIEC because they have conducted a perfect election. The election materials and SIEC officials arrive at the polling booths as early as 7.am. The security atmosphere is very peaceful and the voters have been very orderly. “The voters have been here in their hundreds on queue to cast their vote. We have enough security in every polling unit. The turnout is a testament to our performance in the LCDA and the performance of Governor Abiodun Oyebanji.”


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