EDO GUBER: APC NWC May Screen Out Obaseki Over Certificate Issue

EDO GUBER: Ahead of the June 22 gover­norship primaries of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State, there are feelers that Governor Godwin Obase­ki may be disqualified from participating in the primaries by the screening committeeset up by the national lead­ership of the party.

A credible source in the party said aside the mode of primaries which has become a subject of contro­versy, there is a likelihood that Obaseki may not scale the screening session of the APC which may scuttle his chances of becoming the party’s flag bearer in the September 19 Edo gubernatorial election.

According to him, the party said it is trying to pre­vent a reoccurrence of what happened in Bayelsa when the Supreme Court nullified the victory of David Lyon, the governor-elect, on the grounds that his running mate, Senator Biobarakumo Degi-Eremienyo, presented forged certificates to the In­dependent National Elector­al Commission (INEC).

“The national chairman and his group want to use some lack of original certif­icates to disqualify Gover­nor Godwin Obaseki at the screening.

“If they succeed, the implication is that the gov­ernor may not even partici­pate in the primary, wheth­er direct or indirect,” the source said.

“The Obaseki group are also spoiling for war. They will soon be releasing docu­ments from when Oshiom­hole was governor to nail him, how he was moving monies around.

“Already, they are circu­lating videos of all the nega­tive things Oshiomhole said about Ize-Iyamu during the 2016 governorship election and how he is unfit to rule the state,” he said.

Also on Sunday, gover­nors elected on the platform of the APC met with the par­ty’s national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, on the fate of Governor Obaseki and the mode of primaries to be ad­opted.

According to our source, about nine APC governors, led by Governor Atiku Ba­gudu, who is the chairman of the Progressives Gover­nors’ Forum, attended the meeting with Tinubu at the State House, Marina.

“Yes, the APC governors, led by Kebbi State governor, Atiku Bagudu, met with Asi­waju Tinubu behind closed doors yesterday. I saw them but I don’t know what was discussed at the meeting,” he said.

In a related development, the Ize-Iyamu campaign or­ganisation on Sunday said Governor Obaseki was plot­ting to obtain a court injunc­tion to stop Ize-Iyamu from participating in the prima­ries.

A statement signed by Prince John Mayaki, Direc­tor of Communication and Media, Pastor Osagie Ize- Iyamu Campaign Organi­sation, and made available to our correspondent, read: “The embattled governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, is plotting to procure an in­terim injunction at the Abu­du High Court or any other court in Edo State barring the APC from conducting its internal primary election scheduled for June 22 and re­straining Pastor Osagie Ize Iyamu, his main challenger, from contesting the election, according to reliable sourc­es.

“Also named in the plot are Osarodion Ogie, the Sec­retary to the State Govern­ment, Wole Iyamu, SAN, So­licitor General of the State, and Ken Mozia, SAN.

“These officials, acting on the instruction of Godwin Obaseki, have allegedly in­duced Justice Eborieme of the High Court in Abudu to grant a baseless application for the interim injunction.

“Civil society groups privy to the plan have issued a stern warning to the Edo State judiciary not to avail itself as a tool to scuttle the democracy of the state.

“As the bastion of democ­racy, the courts are to protect democratic institutions and processes.

“They are not meant to be used by the government of the state, or any govern­ment official, to truncate democratic processes or serve personal political am­bitions.”


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