*APC National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole (left) at war with incumbent Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki (middle) and his Deputy, Comrade Philip Shaibu
Irrespective of the political games of the immediate past Governor of Edo State and National Chairman of the All Progressive Congress (APC) party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, the incumbent Deputy Governor of Edo State, Comrade Philip Shaibu has declared that his boss, Governor Godwin Obaseki would win any form of primary election that is orchestrated in state. He said all that they would require is just a 24-hour notification.
The Special Assistant on Media, to the Deputy Governor Benjamin Atu, in a statement said Governor Obaseki’s performance in office was sufficient to guarantee victory at any poll even with a short notice. He, also noted that the Obaseki administration would prefer that the party, APC, conducted an indirect mode of primary election, saying this would be the only appropriate method in view of the committed efforts and precautionary guidelines and directives, put in place to curtail the spread of the dreaded Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the state.
He said, “Despite this confidence and assurance that the victory of Governor Obaseki is not in doubt, we are not ready to go the way of the Direct Primary. Our preference for indirect primary is because we don’t want to secure victory at the expense of the health of those we are seeking to lead.” He said Governor Obaseki would win even if the election was to be held the next day.
“As the Chief Security officer of the State and first among equals, the Governor has decided to conduct the affairs of the State in the way that will ensure safety of its citizens. As at today, Godwin Obaseki is the Governor of Edo State and has the capacity to determine the direction of the State. That doesn’t amount to fear of failure in facing any election but rather putting the interest of the public above desperation to win an election.
“PDP has a National Chairman for instance, the National Chairman of PDP doesn’t usurp the Sovereignty of the PDP States. The Sovereignty of the State can’t be submerged at this critical juncture of our lives. The indirect primary will make it more convenient for INEC to supervise and will be more transparent. The APC National Chairman is insisting on direct primary because the result of the yet to be conducted direct Primary election is already written by him, just waiting to be announced.
“The State is sovereign but not enjoying its sovereignty because some few people are determined to ruin the State by arm twisting the government and Governor as a stooge. What the APC National Chairman is doing is trying to usurp the powers of the State Governor by thinking and making decisions for the Government of Edo State. John Oyegun was the former Governor of Edo State and he didn’t usurp Oshiomhole’s power in the name of ex- Governor. Oshiomhole is not the first ex-Governor in Nigeria. He should give the people and Government of Edo State peace to enable them reason collectively together. Obaseki is currently the Governor of Edo State and his office must be respected because we can only have one Governor at a time. He has spoken and there is no going back on indirect primary. Direct Primary will heighten COVID-19 transmission and infection at the community stage and the State is not ready for such emergency,” he said.