Election: Edo APC Leadership Follows The Foot Step Of Buhari To Congratulate Obaseki

By Elizabeth Chukwuma

At long last, the All Progressive Congress, APC, leadership, in Edo state  appear to have swallowed their pride of rejecting the  September 19, 2020, governorship election result of  the state. The party in its emotional outburst, had rejected the result announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission , INEC, appointed  Returning officer, Akpofure Rem-Rukeh, a Professor and Chancellor, Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun, Warri, Delta state.

  Political Observers believe that the party leadership may have been encouraged  to Congratulate Godwin Obaseki, the state governor, and who incidentally was the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, governorship Candidates  in the just conclude governorship election in the state  because President Muhammadu Buhari ,had congratulated him.

In Congratulating  Obaseki, who had  won the keenly contested election by 14 political parties in the state which fielded Candidates,  Mai Mala Buni, the Chairman of the APC, Caretaker Committee in the state  said ‘’the peaceful conduct of the election and its outcome represents victory for Nigerian’s Democracy’’.

Perhaps to save his face and that of the party,  he said ‘’the party and  the Kastina state born Nigerian President are Committed  ‘’ to free and fair elections to strengthen the foundation  of the country’s political  and moral Authority’’.

Oshiomhole :Invited By Obaseki To Join Hands With Him In Moving The State Forward

In giving reasons for rejecting the governorship election result,  John Mayaki,  the party Chairman, Media Committee,  had alleged  ‘’strong arms  tactics ‘’, which gave the PDP, victory.  Mayaki had alleged that  Osagie Ize –Iyamu, the party governorship Candidate, supporters  were  arbitrarily arrested, , stressing that  many of the figures bandied  about  for the PDP Candidate  were fabricated.

The party further alleged  ‘’illicit  tampering  with the results to shore up Obaseki’s figures  and marked down  that of the APC Candidate  votes. The party had said  that the  electoral umpire  officials   had deliberately decreased the  APC candidate’s votes in areas where  he had advantage   and jerked up PDP figures.

The comments by some of the electorates  interviewed after the election shows clearly that Oshiomhole, a former governor of the state who hds assumed the role of the godfather of Edo politics to equate with Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos state  who has made himself the defacto  godfather of south west politics ,particular,  Lagos state, by dictating  who becomes the governor of the stat speaks  volume.

e.  He may  have dome to Obaseki , what Tinubu, did to Akinwumi Ambode, a former governor of Lagos  sate as he denied him a second term and brought in Babajide Sanwo- Olu, who had contested the 2019, governorship election in the state on the ticket of APC ,and won.

 In the case of Edo  state, Oshiomhole had used subterranean means to disqualify Obaseki from picking the APC, governorship ticket in the September 19, 2020, election  and imposed Ize-Iyamu, a Clergy man as the APC , governorship Candidate.  In imposing Ize-Iyamu on the party, he was optimistic that the Clergy man, will  win the governorship election. He got it wrong . He had failed to read the handwriting on the wall that the people no longer need him and wee ready to turn their back on any  party Candidate he supports to prove to him that he is a political feather weight.

 It was not surprising why the people ensure that Ize-Iyamu,the APC ,Candidate sponsored by him  faiedl the election to avoid giving Oshiomhle room of running the state  from his bed room. Note that he had attempted  to control Obaseki , in his first term in office being his godfather but the later was not ready to bow to him.

 He was said to divided the state House of Assembly as he kept the 14 Lawmakers who were   loyal to him permanently  in Abuja, for  much of the four years o Obaseki first tenure in office to frustrate the him  from functioning effectively in office  .

 Obaseki was said to have  cashed on his action to inaugurate the House with the 10 Lawmakers loyal to him. He did everything within his powers to  force the governor to re-inaugurate the House to ensure that his loyalists clinch the Principal positions in the House  but was disappointed.

Obaseki may have proved to be a better politician than Oshiomhole as  he  was said to have extended a hand of  fellowship to his  erstwhile godfather and his godson, Ize-Iyamu , who incidentally his closest rival    in the  Edo Elections  and other leaders and members of the opposition APC,’’ to join hands with him in the Administration of the state’’.

He was specific on his message to Oshiomhole.  ‘’I want to use  this opportunity  to call on the former Chairman of APC, Comrade Adams Oshuomole   that the fight is over  and he should come  and join in the  house  where he was part of in laying the foundation’’. We have no malice. The only  thing  we disagree on is the approach in moving Edo forward, he remarked.

H The governor may have confirmed  peope’s impression abouthe  PDP and APC, that they are one family, parties without ideology.  This may have informed why he said that ‘’there is need for Cooperation between the two parties to move the Niger Delta state forward.

The  INEC , may have given Obaseki and his Deputy , Philip Shaibu, a cause to Celebrate  as it   issued Certificates of Return  to the duo.  Mrs. May Agbmuche-Mbu, the Commission Commissioner,  incharge of  Edo, Rivers and Bayelsa, was said to have made the presentation   on Tuesday, September 22, 2020., at the Benin City  office.

Notwithstanding the general consensus the Edo Elections was free and fair, that APC, as APC has Congratulated the PDP, Candidate who won the Edo election,  the Federal Court of  Appeal, has established  the Election Petition  Tribunal  and also  constituted a panel  in respect   of  the south-south state  governorship election.  The panel  was said to have been constituted by  Justice Monica Doongban Mnsem, President of the Appeal Court of Nigeria .Both the Election Petition Tribunal and the Panel, were said to have been set up on Sunday, September 20, 2020.

Aggrieved  Candidates  from the 13  political parties which had slugged it out with Obaseki, the PDP, Candidate  on Saturday , September,19, 2020, the Appeal Court President had said has  21 days  after the date of the declaration  of results in line  with section  134 subsection one of the electoral Act  to file their petition against the winner of the election.

The inial fear  was that APC, would file petition against the declaration of Obaseki as the winner of the Edo election based on their grievances  . But the party had agreed that the election was free and fair, an indication that the Edo Election Petition Tribunal and  the  panel that was set   up by the Appeal Court President might not have much work  to do .

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