No doubt, the role of a returning officer is no child’s play. A returning officer must be impartial and also ensure that the conduct of an election is in accordance with the law. And that was the role Prof Joseph Fuwape, who is the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University of Technology, Akure played in the just concluded Osun State governorship election.
Reports have it that Prof Joseph Fuwape had withstood pressure to collect large amount of money in order to favour any party or person during and after the Saturday’s election. He was instrumental in ensuring that the law was duly followed by calling for a rerun after Saturday’s election.
Although in some quarters, there are still reservations for him after he declared Saturday’s election inconclusive as some think he was ‘bribed’ to declare the election inconclusive so that there would be a rerun.
PDP made a call for the prosecution of the vice chancellor following the declaration of Saturday’s election as inconclusive. In a statement by its statement by its Spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, the opposition party demanded the arrest and prosecution of the Osun State Governorship Election Returning Officer, Prof. Joseph Fuwape.
After Saturday’s election, Prof Joseph Fuwape asked the Peoples Democratic Party candidate to seek redress in court if noticed any errors in the results already announced. He said this when the PDP agent, Mr Dele Adeleke, raised an observation that there were errors on the results of the local government announced last Sunday.
Agents of the All Progressives Congress, National Conscience Party and others also asked Adeleke to take his case to the tribunal for redress.
- Joseph Adeola Fuwape was born in November 1957.
- He is the current Vice Chancellor of Federal University of Technology Akure (FUTA).
- Before then, he was the Vice Chancellor at Salem University.
- He was the Head of Forestry and Wood Technology Department at Federal University of Technology Akure(FUTA) for seven years.
- He was the first Director of Quality Assurance Unit at FUTA from 2010 to 2012