The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Lagos has dissociated itself from the letter allegedly written to the commission by the former chairman of the defunct National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) in Lagos, Alhaji Musiliu Akinsanya popularly known as MC Oluomo.
In the letter, MC Oluomo was said to have requested from the Lagos INEC the responsibility of distributing electoral materials on election day across the state.
Reacting to the request, the State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mr Olusegun Agbaje, said the commission is more concerned with issues of motor parks administration in Lagos state for the effective delivery of its election duties and not MC Oluomo.
Agbaje who spoke at a meeting with representatives of security agencies including the military under the auspices of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security at the Commission’s secretariat in Lagos on Tuesday.
He stated categorically that the Commission will not be working with the disbanded NURTW and RTEAN, saying it will amount to going against the law.
He said, “On the issue of MC Oluomo, the commission is not concerned with Oluomo. We are concerned with the issue of motor park administration in Lagos.
For the past two years, the Lagos State government has banned the operations of the NURTW and RTEAN in the state. They had problems and the state government banned them.
So we are left with Lagos State Park and Garages and the National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO).
And we are already working with NARTO and definitely it is not able to meet up with the 40 per cent needs of the commission for this election.
And the commission does not have any other option than to use the park and Garages Management system.
We are not dealing with MC Oluomo, we are dealing with park managers. They are individual persons that have vehicles that we are going to use for the elections.
The law has already banned the NURTW from operating in the state so we cannot violate the law by patronising them.
It will be we working against the law if we have to be working with the banned associations. So it cannot work.”
Agbaje reiterated the Commission’s resolve to fairness and level playing field for all parties in the elections.
“But in working with other groups, don’t forget that, from where they are going to move the electoral materials, we are going to have security personnel and party agents including the military that are going to escort these materials to various local government areas.
So I don’t see how this can compromise the election. The party agents will be there to witness the distribution of the materials.
They will be on the entourage to see that there is no stoppage on the way until they get to local government where they are going to offload the materials.
I don’t see how this will compromise the election in any way. I just want the politicians to see the peculiarity in Lagos state.
We need over 5000 vehicles for this election including trucks and buses to carry our staff and materials for the elections. There is no other way to go about it.
We cannot go to another state to bring vehicles because it is not allowed by law.
We can’t work against the law. In fact, most of the members of the NURTW are already working with the Lagos State Parks and Garages Management.”