The Ataoja of Osogbo land, Oba Jimoh Olanipekun, has urged electorates in Osun to vote for credible and God-fearing candidates to be their representatives during the 2023 general elections.
Oba Olanipekun gave this charge during a visit by Dr Mutiu Agboke, the Osun Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Resident Electoral Commissioner, to his palace on Tuesday.
The Ataoja also revealed that they have been advocating and calling on Osogbo residents to go and collect their Permanent Voter Cards, PVCs.
Oba Olanipekun added that the palace is also educating the people not to sell their votes, as a vote bought is a vote lost.
“We have been telling our people not to sell their votes, to keep their PVCs and shun vote-buying. Electorates should not tie their votes to the collection of money.
“We have been advocating in Osogbo for people to come out and collect their PVCs. Their vote is their power. We tell them unless they do these and vote, their choice would not win,” the monarch said.
In his reaction, Dr Mutiu Agboke lamented the lethargic attitude of the Osogbo people to the collection of PVCs.
“INEC has observed that the residents of Osogbo have not been collecting their PVCs. Royal fathers are stakeholders, too. We want royal fathers, especially the Ataoja to persuade his people to come for their PVCs.
“They should know that without PVCs and BVAS, nobody can vote. The introduction of these technologies is that INEC has removed corruption from the electoral process.
“Politicians too are not helping matters through their destructions of political billboards and posters.
“INEC will only declare the people’s choice as elected and intimidation will not move INEC to succumb to whims. INEC will not postpone or cancel the 2023 general elections and the election would hold,” he said.
The Osun Resident Electoral Commissioner warned that anyone caught selling or buying PVCs would be prosecuted.