#BounceExclusive: How Lagos LG Elections May Have Been Rigged
After five years of running the local councils with sole administrators and executive secretaries at different times, Lagos State government, on Tuesday finally ended the undemocratic era with the swearing of elected chairmen and vice chairmen in its 20 local government areas, and 37 Local Council Development Areas (LCDAs).
The elections, which produced the new Chairmen, however, recorded a low turnout of voters as many in the state stayed indoors.
Although the polls were adjudged to be violence free, they were, however, not free from monetary inducements, falsification of final result and lacking in transparency.
Candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) were announced by the Lagos Independent Electoral Commission (LASEC) as winners of all the 57 local government chairmanship seats while the party also won 369 out of the 377 seats. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) won four councillorship seats while Accord won 3.
But preliminary investigations by Bounce News revealed that the opposition parties may have won more than the seven councillorship allocated to them.
In Ikosi Isheri, several riggings were said to have taken place in several polling units of Mile 12 and Isheri in the night. Announcement of the final result was delayed for several hours to enable the APC and LASIEC officials perfect their plans. When the final result was announce, it did not tally with the results from the seven wards in the LCDA.
The same scenario was said to have happened in Somolu, Orile- Agege, Agege and Agbado Oke
The APC also found some allies in the opposition parties to perpetrate the fraud.
In some places, opposition candidates were betrayed by their own agents. Though the opposition claimed it deployed agents at all polling stations across the state, a significant number of polling stations had no such agents.
For instance, at 2pm on election day whenBounce News visited Unit 025 in Alausa only APCi and KOWA agents were present. The case was not any different in other parts of the state, where opposition candidates relied on agents of some other parties.
Bounce News authoritatively gathered that some agents of the PDP and Labour Party were bribed to turn a blind eye on the the irregularies being perpetrated by the APC and LASIEC officials.
Bounce News learnt that each of the opposition agent who played play ball was offered N10 000 cash.
At the collation centre for Oshodi LG, only APC and Labour Party agents and security agents followed the tallying of the results. The PDP agent failed to show up and did not sign the result sheet.
When confronted with the allegations of fraud during the elections, Olamide Kasali, Chairman of APC in Osodi, told Bounce News that the losers are trying to win public sympathy.
"Any dissatisfaction should be addressed in the right forum - they should go to election tribunal because what is being said now are just rumours; they are trying to win sympathy by creating these stories," Kasali said.
The PDP has officially rejected the result and has said it would go to the electoral Tribunal to challenge the election.
The aggrieved parties are expected to appeal the decision within 21 days that the Tribunal is expected to be constituted. The Electoral Act gives the Tribunal the restriction to decide the case within 90 days. Thus, within three to four months, the case would have been decided.