Fashola to MC Oluomo: ‘Obey court order’


  • As APC gives INEC 24-hr ultimatum to declare breakdown of PVCs collected
Uba Group


Barely three days to the presidential election, Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, has asked the Chairman of the Lagos State Parks Management Committee, Musiliu Akinsanya, popularly called MC Okuomo, to obey the court order that restrained him from distributing electoral materials in the upcoming elections.

Speaking on the court order stopping the Independent National Electoral Commission from engaging the services of Akinsanya to distribute election materials in the state pending the hearing and determination of a suit filed by the Labour Party and five others, Fashola said, “I think that by now, from my own public service records, where I stand on rule of law is no longer a matter for debate. I have been a public servant for 21 years and it is not what I say now that matters or what I do. It is the consistency of my conduct.

“I see that some sections of the media have tried to suggest that I was inviting certain authority to act in defiance in the court order.

“For me, there is no choice between the rule of law and my life. My life really means nothing if it is not lived with the rule of law, that is what protects all of us.

“So, anybody who is faced with an order of court, whether it be INEC, whether it be anybody is bound to comply. Whether you like the court order or not, if you don’t like the court order, the rule has been set down from centuries ago that you must go back to the same court to say I am challenging this order. The person to whom the order is made should simply comply. There is no choice, it is the rule of law or nothing.”

In another development, the ruling All Progressives Congress has asked the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to provide a breakdown of the total number of Permanent Voter Cards collected by Nigerians.

Director of Election Planning and monitoring directorate of APC Presidential Campaign Council, Fashola, made the request Tuesday while addressing a press conference in Abuja.

The minister declared that the commission must make the information available before close of work on Tuesday or not later than 24 hours after.

Fashola noted that this became necessary for the sake of the credibility of election results and integrity of the process.

“We have been acquainted with how many people registered, but we don’t have the numbers of how many people collected PVCs and that is a very important task.

And I think I speak the minds of all the parties by saying: How many people collected PVCs, the breakdown of PVCs collection per state and per local government and to every unit of electoral activity that INEC can provide that information.

“We think it is a very important piece of information that will help INEC reinforce the credibility of the exercise that it is undertaking,” Fashola noted.

Speaking further in a question and answer session, the minister emphasised that the piece of information the party is requesting for is critical to closing its planning and projections for the elections.

“As I said to you earlier, at every point in time INEC has largely, especially through my learned friend, Festus Okoye always acquainted us –what has happened, the voter registration, when this would start. We even attended the simulation exercise with the BVAS. If they have been consistent with providing all of that data, how many did this, how many did that, I think that it is only logical that we know how many have collected and that is the context in which we are asking for it.

“Because, we are the Election Planning and Monitoring Directorate, we have all of the other data but we don’t have that data. It is a crucially missing data to close our planning and projections. So, we asked that data be made available in the shortest possible time. Hopefully, not later than the the close of business today or certainly not later than 24 hours from now,” he said.

Speaking on the party’s preparation for the poll, the former Lagos State governor said the Directorate had set up a situation room to monitor the elections progress in real time and has also trained its polling agents across the nation.


“Our situation room is up and running as you probably aware. We’ve been busy with the planning, we’ve prepared, we’ve trained agents as you know. We’ve trained people that we asked to go and train people in their State.

“Today we responded to invitation to visit vote data centre set up by YIAGA. We’ve gone to see what they have and as I joked with them, they won’t be the only one monitoring the election, our operations are much more larger than theirs.

“Other than that we are busy planning, our candidate is also busy campaigning, he’s in Lagos at the moment. We remain very very optimistic that we are certain of victory in the elections.”

He noted that the enthusiasm from the Party’s agents and supporters is encouraging. “What we hear from them is that whether they get the money or not, whether they get the fuel or not they are going to work for the APC, they are going to deliver Asiwaju and all our candidates and the issues of money does not matter.”