Industry, Trade and Investment Minister Niyi Adebayo praised INEC for introducing technology to Nigeria’s electoral process, saying it could have helped him win a second term in office in 2003.
Speaking to our correspondent after casting his vote for his preferred candidate in Iyin-Ekiti, the former governor said he was impressed with voter turnout but hoped INEC would learn from it and improve the BVAS technology.
Otunba Niyi Adebayo was the Governor of Ekiti State under the Democracy Alliance Platform in Ekiti State when democracy returned in 1998.
He lost along with other governors elected on the Alliance for Democracy platform to the political intrigue that unfolded when the governors decided to support President Olusegun Obasanjo’s presidential bid for the return in 2003.
He was defeated by Mr. Ayodele Fayose of the People’s Democratic Party and he was unable to stand for election for a second term in 2007 unlike his predecessor.
Otunba Niyi Adebayo and Ayodele Fayose both played important roles in Ekiti State politics as godfathers to governors or even governors themselves.
The 2007 election was contested by Kayode Fayemi of the Action Congress and Segun of the People’s Democratic Party, with Kayode Fayemi enjoying the support of Otunba Niyi Adebayo and Ayodele Fayose while Segun Oni was backed by Chief Afe Babalola and Olusegun Obasanjo.
The election eventually went Kayode Fayemi’s path after Segun was initially sworn in as Governor, followed by a re-election and election petition that lasted over 3 years.
Fayemi was denied a return for a second term as Governor of Ekiti when he lost to Ayodele Fayose in 2014 under controversial circumstances and returned in 2018 as Governor after defeating anointed candidate Fayose , Olusola Eleka.
The current election is between the anointed candidates of Kayode Fayemi, Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji, of the APC, Bisi Kolawole of the People’s Democratic Party, anointed by Fayose and Segun Oni, a former governor who was removed by the courts to open the way to Kayode Fayemi. initial emergence as Governor of Ekiti State.