Osogbo, the capital of Osun State, was on Saturday rocked by protests, leading to blockage of major roads and disruption of vehicular and human movements.
Many business owners in the city did not open for fear of being attacked by hoodlums amid the unrest.
On the one hand, members of the Peoples Democratic Party took to the streets of the state capital to continue their protest against Friday’s tribunal judgment nullifying the election of Governor Ademola Adeleke.
On the other hand, commercial transporters in the state were on the streets protesting the scarcity and hike in the pump price of petrol.
The two protests went on simultaneously.
The PDP protesters marched through Osogbo, chanting songs denouncing the nullification of the governor’s victory at the July 16, 2022 poll.
The three-man tribunal had in its lead judgment delivered by its chairman, Justice Tetsea Kume, overturned Adeleke’s victory and announced ex-governor Adegboyega Oyetola as the winner of the poll.
Justice Kume held that Oyetola and his party, the All Progressives Congress, successfully proved their claim of over-voting in six local government areas during the election.
As it overturned Adeleke’s victory, the tribunal ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to withdraw the Certificate of Return issued to him while Oyetola should be recognised as the winner of the governorship poll.
The judgment came as a rude shock to Adeleke and the PDP, with party members and loyalists across the state going on the rampage.
Soon after the verdict on Friday, the party members and loyalists demanded that Adeleke should make a state broadcast, calling for calm and assuring them that he would appeal the judgment.
On Saturday, the protesting PDP members went through Osogbo streets carrying placards with several inscriptions such as: “We were cheated before, now we reject miscarriage of justice’’; “Gov. Adeleke is our governor, no change of currency can change that’’; among others.
Chanting songs and raining curses, the protesters marched through Odi-Olowo and Oja-Oba areas to assemble at the Old Garage area, where they were addressed by a party leader and PDP senatorial candidate, Mr Ganiyu Olaoluwa.
Olaoluwa condemned the tribunal’s judgment and described it as a threat to democracy.
He, however, urged the aggrieved protesters to remain peaceful, saying they needed to keep faith and stand by Adeleke, whom he described as the actual winner of the poll.
Meanwhile, on their own part, commercial transporters protesting fuel scarcity and pump price hike blocked Owode-Ede, Ogo-Oluwa, Aregbe and Old Garage ends of the Gbongan-Osogbo Expressway.
They forced passengers out of buses and from commercial motorcycles.
They prevented intra-city commercial mini buses and commercial motorcyclists from picking passengers.
They, however, allowed private vehicles to move without hindrance, but forced commercial mini buses owners and commercial motorcyclists to stop working.
The immediate past chairman, Road Transport Employees Association of Nigeria in Osun, Mr Abioye Adekunle, told the News Agency of Nigeria that the action was to protest exorbitant price of petrol.
Adekunle said, “The price of petrol in Osun is ridiculously high. We are buying between N370 and N460 per litre.
“I just came back from Abuja. Even when there is queue, when you go into filling stations, you would still buy at N196 per litre.
“Here in Osun, the petrol is not even available and those selling are selling for between N370 and N460 per litre.
“The high cost of fuel is negatively affecting the operation of our members and that is why we are protesting so government can know what is going on and maybe come to our aid.”
Amid the two protests, major roads in Osogbo and Ilesa were blocked, with vehicular movement grounded along Osogbo/Ikirun road and Gbongan/Osogbo road.