A former governor of Ogun State, Olusegun Osoba, has said that he was rigged out of office during the 2003 governorship election.
According to Osoba, he had received an intelligence report about the rigging and he was advised to back out of the poll but he insisted on going ahead in the contest.
He spoke in Abeokuta, Ogun State, at the book launch and 60th birthday of his former Chief Press Secretary, Kayode Odunaro, on Wednesday.
Osoba, who contested the election on the platform of the defunct Alliance for Democracy, lost to Otunba Gbenga Daniel of the Peoples Democratic Party.
He said he knew that he would lose the election following last-minute reports from security agents but still bowed to pressure of his followers and shared N140million to the electorate on the eve of the election.
He said, “The 2003 election, I put it behind me many years ago. 2003 is bygone whatever happened although, in his (Odunaro) book he concluded that I refused to go to court, yes I did not, because the evidence was too much and he alluded to some of the evidence, but let’s forget about all that, it has gone, it is gone and the Ogun state people have had the chance to compare and contrast and they have given their conclusions and that is private to everybody.
“Nobody expected that the election would go the way it went, but I knew it will go the way it went because Prof Adu of FUNAAB who was the returning officer had the figure already prepared.
“Some of the security people had given me the figure of the result that they were going to announce and I knew, he was referring to me spending money and some people taking my money to sleep in hotels, pocketed the money, I knew because in politics you must learn to engage in wasteful spending and you must learn to buy all kinds of lies, that is all part of politics.
“I knew that the election was concluded; I was warned, the electoral officer from Cross River had told me after the presidential election that, ‘Chief don’t contest the governorship, it is concluded’, but I said no.
“We shared N140million on the eve of the election and I knew it was a wasted money, but I shared it because if didn’t share it, they will say if I had not given them the money, they would have won.”