The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are already bracing up for the forthcoming Governorship election in Edo and Ondo states ahead of the 2019 general election. The two major parties are aiming to use the two polls holding later this year to bolster their chances in 2019 general election.
The governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states will hold on September 10 and November 26 respectively, according to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in its bulletin. As part of the preparations for the two elections, campaigns by aspirants and political parties for the Edo governorship race will begin on June 12, while aspirants and parties in Ondo will take their turn on August 28. “July 2 to July 4 have also been set aside for the conduct of party primaries, including resolution of disputes arising from the primaries,”
INEC said. It stated that official register of voters for the election in Edo will be published on August 11, adding that submission of names of political parties’ agents should be made to Electoral Officers in the local government areas in the state on August 28. According to the commission, September 8 will be the last day for campaigns for the Edo governorship election. For Ondo State, it fixed August 28 for commencement of campaigns by political parties, adding that the parties had between August 22 and August 26 to collect nomination forms from INEC headquarters in Abuja.
The commission announced that conduct of party primaries, including resolution of disputes arising from the primaries in Ondo State would hold between September 18 and September 19 while the register of voters for the Ondo election would be published on October 27, while submission of party agents’ names to Electoral Officers in the local government areas had been slated for November 19 with November 24 as the last day for campaigns for the Ondo polls. Already, ahead of the two elections, both parties have stepped up modalities for the selection of their candidates in line with INEC guidelines with the PDP planning not to commit the same mistakes that cost it the 2015 election.
But the APC too is not resting on its oars especially in Edo State, where it had set up a reconciliation committee of the crisis in the State House of Assembly which resulted in the impeachment of its Speaker which many believed was a prelude to the impeachment of the deputy governor who had indicated his interest to succeed his boss, Comrade Adams Oshimhole. The impeachment of the speaker came barely a week after an attack on the deputy governor during a tour to some local government areas where he had gone to inform people of his intention to run for the governorship election.