Edo Guber: Fresh crisis hits APC as Idahosa rejects Okpebholo’s emergence as candidate


Fresh crisis has hit the All Progressives Congress, APC, over the election of the party’s candidate for the September 21, 2024 governorship election in Edo State.

Dennis Idahosa, the first runner-up in the just concluded primary election, has rejected the declaration of Senator Monday Okpebholo as the party’s gubernatorial candidate.

DAILY POST reports that other governorship aspirants which include Prince Clem Ikanade Agba, the former minister of Budget and Economic Planning to former President Muhammadu Buhari and Dr Ernest Afolabi Umakhihe, the immediate past Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, have congratulated Okpebholo for being elected as the party’s flag bearer.

However, Idahosa, in a statement made available to newsmen in Benin City, alleged that the “fictitious results” declared by Governor Bassey Otu of Cross River State-led committee represented the highest level of rape on democracy ever witnessed in Edo State.

“Events in the last few days may have been very disappointing and demoralizing to lots of people as your votes seemed not to have counted going by the process and declaration of fictitious primary election results of what happened on the field on the 22nd re-run elections in the 192 wards of the State.

“Let me assure you all, our teaming supporters that, I shall explore all the party internal mechanisms to resolve the issues, and seeks justice and where that doesn’t work, I shall communicate with you all on our next line of action,” he said.

The lawmaker representing Ovia Federal Constituency in the National Assembly, however, appreciated his supporters across the state for their massive and unwavering support towards his ambition of becoming the party’s flag bearer in the September 21, 2024, Edo gubernatorial election.

While assuring his supporters that he would never take their show of love and confidence for granted, he, however, vowed to explore all the internal mechanisms of the party to seek justice.

He added that if the internal mechanism do not guarantee him the expected justice, he would also communicate his next line of action to the supporters.

Idahosa, however, appealed to his supporters to continue to maintain peace in the face of provocation.

It will be recalled that Idahosa was declared winner of the cancelled primary election by Imo State governor and erstwhile chairman of the primary election committee, Hope Uzodinma.
However, in a separate development, Prince Clem Agba, in a statement titled, ‘My Stand on the Outcome of APC’s Governorship Primary Election, said he has decided to work in the best interest of the party “as a loyal party man”.

He said, “I have called Senator Monday Okpebholo to congratulate him on his candidature and assure him of my support in the journey to Osadebe Avenue.

“I, therefore, use this medium to call on my supporters to join me in working with Senator Monday Okpebholo for the Party’s governorship election victory in September. Let us do what is best for our Party to secure victory in Edo State.

“Also, let me thank all the members of my campaign council and team for a well-run race. We were able to elevate the conversation and show that there is hope and a place for the right policies and initiatives to transform our state.

“I want to thank all aspirants for giving a good contest and showing that Edo APC is well and truly alive.
To the other aspirants, our supporters, and members of the Party, while each of us might have one issue or another with the process so far, we must, in the interest of the Party, come together, unite and fight to win the general elections.

“We must ensure that APC Edo remains united because that is the only path to victory. It is a long road ahead, but undoubtedly one that spells well for the future of Edo State. It is my wish that together, we can heal and forge a path forward as the general elections approach.

“Finally, I want to thank every one of my supporters for your unwavering support and belief in our vision. Your passion and dedication have been the driving force behind my campaign, and I am genuinely grateful to each of you.

“Once again, I congratulate the governorship candidate of our Party and wish him the wisdom and understanding to unite the Party towards our common goal.”

Dr Ernest Umakhihe also congratulated Okpebholo.

In his congratulatory message, Umakhihe opined that APC has demonstrated the true meaning of internal democracy with Okpebholo’s election as the party’s candidate for the September 21, 2024 Edo Governorship Election.

“I salute the leadership and especially the victor, who have emerged from the exercise,” he said.

“As you prepare to commence the campaign activities, please be assured of my support.

“May God grant you the wisdom and strength to carry the banner of the APC to victory.”