Benin City the Edo State capital is agog as the governorship primary of the All Progressives Congress, APC holds today for 12 aspirants.
Governor Adams Oshiomole’s candidate, Godwin Obasaki, who is rumoured to be in control of no fewer than 930 delegates, is favoured to clinch the ticket.
He is said to enjoy endorsement from the group Edo in Safe Hands led by the state Commissioner of Works, Osarodion Ogie.
In today’s exercise, 2,873 delegates drawn 12 each from 192 wards in Edo State are expected to vote at the primary that will be contested by 12 aspirants. Others are local government delegates, 26 persons each from the 18 local government areas.
Also, there are the state executive delegates, 35, and statutory delegates, 66, totalling 2,873 delegates in all, according to the convention committee.
The candidates are Mr. Blessing Agbomhere; Maj.-Gen. Charles Airhiavbere; Prof. Fredrick Amadasun; Rep. Emmanuel Arigbe-Osula; Mr Austin Emuan and Mr Peter Esele.
Others are: Mr. Kenneth Imansuangbon, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, Mrs. Agbarha Justina, Mr. Christopher Ogiemwonyi; Prof. Oserheimen Osunbor and the incumbent deputy governor, Mr. Pius Odubu.
The Chibudum Nwuche-led seven-member committee successfully screened all candidates.
It would be recalled that Washington Osifo, who led the group that endorsed Obasaki had said that they acknowledged the fact that all the aspirants contesting under the APC are eminently qualified but they believed Obaseki had the best credential to continue the good works of the Governor Oshiomhole-led administration.
“At a time like this, taking into cognisance the dwindling resources accruing to our dear state, we need a seasoned economist, manager, and technocrat with proven economic managerial ability coupled with the required political exposure to effectively steer the ship of our dear state, so as to sustain, improve and build on the legacies of the Oshiomhole administration.
“We appeal to other delegates to the Edo State 2016 APC governorship primaries to embrace, support and vote our adopted aspirant, Obaseki.”
However, members of the APC and delegates in today’s governorship primaries staged a protest in Benin City against what they described as the forceful and illegal collection of their Permanent Voters Cards, PVCs.
Addressing jourrnalists under the aegis of Concerned Edo Progressives, they expressed shock at the mopping up of PVCs from delegates across the three senatorial districts alleging that the PVCs were being collected on behalf of an aspirant claim to be acting on the request of the state government.
In a protest letter signed by Okoh John and addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari; APC National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun; National Security Adviser, NSA; the Inspector General of Police and the Director General, Department of State Services, DSS, read in part: “It has become necessary to bring this ugly situation to your attention because these agents that are collecting the PVCs on behalf of one of the aspirants claim to be acting on the request of Edo State government officials.
“We cannot reconcile the interest of Edo State Government in the forceful collection of PVCs with the internal democracy of APC. This situation has already created high tension among the members of APC in particular and Edo public in general.

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