The Good People of Ogun State,
Our Stakeholders in the electoral process,
Distinguished members of the press, ladies and gentlemen;
I warmly welcome and appreciate all that are here present today, especially the various stakeholders in the electoral process. We are all aware that the third tier of Government is the Local Government, which is closer to the people, where every citizen is afforded the opportunity to be directly or indirectly involved in the way they are being governed.
As a matter of fact, bringing the Government and governance closer to the people fosters cordial socio- economic relationship amongst the citizenry. Therefore, it is not difficult to appreciate the legitimate aspirations of those who are yearning to participate in the electoral process.
As you are aware, the State Government has recently approved the amendment of the 2002 Local Government law which recognizes the original 20 Local Governments and create additional 37 Local Council Development Areas in the State; thus, paving the way for Electioneering process into the 20 Local Governments and 37[LCDAs] in the State.
Section 197 sub section  [b] third schedule, part 11 of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria states that;
A State independent Electoral Commission shall comprise of the following members;
[a] A Chairman and
[b] Not less than five but not more than seven other persons’
The Commission shall also have power to:
[a] organise, undertake and supervise all elections to Local Government Councils within the State.
[b] render such advise as it may deem necessary to the Independent Electoral Commission on the compilation of the register of voters [Voters Register] in so far as the register is applicable to local government elections in the State.
OGUN STATE ELECTORAL LAW
The current electoral law which regulates the conduct of local council elections in the state was enacted by the Ogun State House of
Assembly on 7th February,2007.
The law comprises of the following sections;
Part I - Preliminary
Part II - Appointment and Supervision of Officers
Part III - Procedure of Elections
Part IV - Conduct of Elections
Part V - Electoral Offences
Part VI - Determination of Election Petitions under this Law
Part VII - Procedure of Election Petitions
According to the British Philosopher – John Locke defines democracy “as a government whereby people choose their own leaders by vote”.
As you are aware, Section 197 sub-section 1(b) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, establishes the Ogun State Independent Electoral Commission (OGSIEC).
Equally, Section 10 (1) of Ogun State Independent Electoral Commission Law 2007 (as amended) empowered the Commission to organise, undertake and supervise all elections to Local Government Councils in the State in accordance with the provisions of the law or any enactment, guidelines, rules or manual issued or made by the Commission thereof.
Consequently, it is my wish to inform our numerous democrats that the notice of the year 2016 Local Government and Local Council Development Areas Elections is hereby given and based on the Electoral Time-Table which will be distributed to all, the 2016 Local Government and Local Council Development Areas Elections will hold on Saturday, 8th October, 2016 throughout the twenty (20) Local Government and the thirty-seven (37) Local Council Development Areas in Ogun State between 8.00am and 3.00pm.
Other relevant information as it concerns the elections are carefully stated in the Guidelines to political parties on the Year 2016 Local Government and Local Council Development Areas Elections as released by this Commission, copies of which can be obtained free of charge from the offices of the electoral officers assigned to the Twenty (20) Local Government and the Thirty-Seven Local Council Development Areas in the State.
Let me use this medium to appeal to our good people, particularly the Youths not to allow themselves to be used as instrument of violence, reject all forms of rigging and shun all acts capable of jeopardizing the public interest in electing competent and public spirited individuals to fill offices in our Local Government Councils.
Furthermore, I wish to appeal to all political parties and politicians that it is a matter of law and moral for them to play the game according to the rule. Violence should be expunged from our arsenal, as one of the tools of attaining political power and relevance.
It should be replaced by healthy rivalry, characterised by progressive, robust debates and exciting campaigns.
Gentlemen of the pen profession, let me assure you that, Ogun State Independent Electoral Commission (OGSIEC) as an impartial umpire is set to provide level playing field for all stakeholders to exercise their rights. The Commission will maintain strict neutrality and ensure fairness to all aspirants.
I am also using this opportunity to appeal to all citizenry that have reached voting age to come out en-masse and participate fully in the process. As the Commission is irreversibly intent to organise a credible, free and fair Local Governments and Local Councils Development Area Elections.
I thank you for listening and God bless.
Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, charged the Benue State Independent Electoral Commission, BESIEC, to conduct council polls in the state as soon as possible.
Dr. John Tor Tsuwa attended Government secondary school Gboko and passed out in 1995. Before his appointment as the Chairman of BSIEC, he was a lecturer with the Department of Political Science.