The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has been mandated by the House of Representatives to obey the court order restoring eight state constituencies across Oyo State, namely: Ibadan North III, Ibadan South-West III, Ibarapa Central, Irepo, Itesiwaju, Oyo East, Saki East and Surulere.
The House passed the resolution, following the adoption of a motion jointly sponsored by Hons. Olusegun Dokun Odebunmi, Akeem Adeyemi, Olajide Olatunbosun, Ojerinde Olumide and Olaide Akinremi.
The sponsors had underscored the need for the operation of the eight state constituencies to take effect in the succeeding state House of Assembly election, under the provision of section 115 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).
In his lead debate, Hon. Odebunmi stressed the need to uphold the decision of the Federal High Court of Nigeria, Ibadan Division, handed down on March 8, 2013 in Attorney General of Oyo State vs. Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, which ordered INEC to make the restored eight state constituencies operational forthwith.
Noting that there is a substantive judgement to restore the constituencies, Hon. Odebunmi expressed displeasure at INEC’s recalcitrant attitude to obey the court order.
He said, “The House is aware that, from the day of judgment till date, no equal or superior court has set aside the court decision under reference.
“The House is disturbed that delay in complying with the order of the Federal High Court to make the restored eight state constituencies in Oyo State operational is in violation of the provisions of section 91 and 115 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) and has unlawfully denied the people of Ibadan North ll, Ibadan South-West III, Ibarapa Central, Irepo, Itesiwaju, Oyo East, Saki East and Surulere state constituencies of their right to proper representation in the Oyo State House of Assembly.”
Consequently, the House approved the restoration of Ibadan North 1, Ibadan South-West Tbarapa Central, Irepo, Itesiwaju, Oyo East, Saki East and Surulere State Constituencies as directed by the Federal High Court.
In his ruling, the Deputy Speaker, Hon. Idris Wase, who allayed the fear of members whose constituencies have been affected by the same circumstance, disclosed that there is a motion in the works to give the issue a national scope, to give it a permanent solution.
To this end, the House mandated the House Committee on Electoral Matters to ensure compliance.