Posted by News Express | 26 July 2020 | 1,481 times
By TONY OSAUZO, Benin
The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) flagged-off its campaign for the September 19 Edo State governorship election in Benin City on Saturday, with Rivers State Governor and National Chairman of the Campaign Council Mr Nyesom Wike, warning that the State would be a no go area for the rigging by the All Progressives Congress (APC), adding that any attempt to do so will be resisted.
Speaking at the rally which held at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Wike declared: “Nobody can rig this Edo election. No one man can decide what happens in Edo. Today ends godfatherism in the state.
“The only thing that keeps the APC going is that they believe in rigging, but this very one, it will be very, very difficult.”
The Governor urged the people of the State to rise up and defend their votes and should not allow anyone, whether security agency or Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) personnel to rig the election, adding: “Vote and protect your votes and nothing will happen to anybody because I believe Obaseki has done well and the election is already won.
‘Obaseki is one of the best things that have happened to PDP. He has done well by resisting godfathers. Now, there is no hope for APC as Edo is now a PDP State. We will not allow them to take Edo,” he said.
In his speech, the Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Waziri Tanbuwal, said the prayers of the people of Sokoto is with Obaseki.
“You cannot eat you cake and still have it. You cannot be everywhere condemning godfatherism and you want to be a godfather. Edo is a strategic state. We know where we are coming from and so no one can come to Edo to claim superiority.
“I gave Obaseki the tip on how to demobilise godfathers. I advise that he should continue to hold on to God Almighty and not individuals. Persons can disappoint you but God cannot. That was what we did in Sokoto that demobilised all the forces both within and from afar. Votes must count,” Tambuwal said.
The Sokoto Governor advised the Chairman of the National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Mahmood Yakubu, to build on the legacies of his predecessor, Prof Attahiru Jega, who ensured one man one vote, saying that he should not allow anybody to use him.
Tambuwal called on President Muhammadu Buhari to rise up to the occasion, stressing that though his anti-corruption fight has been challenging, he should not fail to guarantee a free, fair and credible election in Edo and to Nigerians in 2023.
On his part, the Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, stated that he was a happy man because the PDP is now in control of all the States in the South-South, with Edo joining the fold without fighting any electoral battle in the state 12 years after the party lost the State.
Also speaking, Bauchi State Governor Bala Mohammed praised Governor Obaseki for proving his mettle at the Governors’ Forum; he asked the people of Edo not to allow mediocrities to take over the running of the State, adding: “You must not seat and relax because politics is war for freed and liberty.”
The Governors of Oyo and Bayelsa states, Seyi Makinde and Duoye Diri, respectively, in their speech, said that the only way to guarantee good work in Edo is for the people to come out and vote for the PDP.
Senate Minority Leader Enyinnaya Abaribe said that time had come for the people of Edo to reject the APC for broken promises.
The National Chairman of PDP, Uche Secondus, said that Nigeria is at a crossroad and appealed to President Buhari not to be distracted by the happenings in the APC, but to provide security and ensure a free and fair election for Nigerians.
“Edo election is going to be the first step in the presidency. All eyes are focused on Edo election and whether he will give Nigerian a free, fair and equitable election,” he said.
Secondus later handed the PDP flag to Obaseki, saying: “The man we are here for today is an accomplished person. Today, we are very proud of him and his achievements in Edo State. All of our governors are stars while others are busy preventing the promotion of democracy.
“If you entre Benin City, the place has been transformed. Therefore, on behalf of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP, I present the victory flag of PDP to continue to provide good governance to the people of Edo State. God will deliver you, stretching His right hand of righteousness upon you.”
Governor Obaseki, in his speech, promised to continue the transformation of Edo, declaring that “the flag you have given us is a further mandate to say you like what we have done, go back and continue what you are doing.
“In the past four years, we have put the people first even though some people did not like that but we are not bothered to say it should be the people first before any of us.”
He disclosed that a programme, Make Edo Great Again (MEGA), will be rolled out to restore hope and chart a future for the people of the state. (The Sun)
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