PDP scores 307,955 votes to beat APC with 223,619 votes
Governor salutes Edo people, assures sustained devt
hails Buhari, INEC, security agencies for peaceful, credible poll
Edo 2020: We are waiting for Ize-Iyamu’s phone call to Obaseki to concede defeat, says Obaseki’s aide
By Patrick Okohue, Titus Akhigbe & Nosa Akenzua
The streets of Benin City, the Edo State capital went into a celebration mood yesterday, as the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared the governor of the State, Mr. Godwin Obaseki as winner of the September 19 governorship election in the state.
The victory of Obaseki of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the keenly contested election proved many book makers wrong who had given the victory to Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu wrong, as he was declared winner having scored the highest lawful votes in the contest.
As soon as the result of the election was announced, declaring Obaseki winner, the state capital immediately switched into celebration mood with horns of several cars blaring continuously, head lamps and traffic indicators put on and the PDP flags swinging from the windows of several cars.
Thanking God for his victory, Obaseki, hailed the Edo people and supporters of his party, the PDP for their display of immense courage and support in the face of threats, intimidation and brutalisation as he emerged victorious in Saturday’s gubernatorial election in the state.
Obaseki defeated his closest rival, Osagie Ize-Iyamu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), polling a total of 307,955 votes against APC’s 223,619 votes.
The governor in his appreciation message in Benin City on Sunday hailed President Muhammadu Buhari, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), security agencies and other stakeholders who participated in the conduct of the gubernatorial election for ensuring a free, peaceful and credible poll in the state.
Obaseki said: “The Great People of Edo State have spoken. They have spoken loud and clear. We thank God Almighty and give him all the glory for this victory.
“Thank you, President Muhammadu Buhari, for defending our democracy and allowing the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the security agencies to perform their constitutional functions without interference.
“INEC and the security services have shown to Nigerians and the world that they are capable of conducting free and credible elections.”
The governor who waqs flanked by the governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, his Delta State counterpart, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa among other dignitaries as he spoke with journalists said, “Words fail me in saluting our teeming supporters who displayed immense courage in the face of threats, intimidation and brutalization.
The collective will of Edo people made it possible for this triumph over godfatherism.
“I am eternally grateful to my party the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and my brother governors not only for giving me the umbrella during my political storm but for the hard work which has brought me back to office.
“Our success has reinforced my belief that there is nothing we cannot achieve as a people if we pull forces together and collectively call on God for support.
“I reiterate that working with my Deputy, Rt. Hon. Philip Shaibu, we are committed to Making Edo Great Again. Thank you for your support,” he added.
This is as the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Crusoe Osagie, has said that candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Osagie Ize-Iyamu is set to concede defeat and congratulate the governor on his triumph in Saturday’s gubernatorial poll, any moment from now.
Earlier while the results of the election was being announced and the PDP Campaign Council suspected an impending fowl play, as the last two local governments were being unnecessarily delayed, Governor Nyesom Wike, who is the chairman of the council and the Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde had warned officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on plans to declare the Edo Governorship election inconclusive.
Briefing journalists at the PDP Situation room in Benin City, on the delay in releasing the collation of results for Orhionmwon LGA, the duo said any attempt to declare the state governorship election inconclusive is another attempt to plunge the state into crisis.
According to Wike, Edo Electorate already knows that the results so far announced in 16 LGAs of the state is in favour of the PDP candidate.
Wike and Makinde in their separate speeches said that there was no need to try to manipulate the results as the entire Edo State and Nigerians home and abroad have the knowledge that the PDP is leading with a wide margin that cannot be compromised.
He said INEC must not let the effort of Edo people at the polls on Saturday be in vain as they have collectively voted the PDP, wondering why the Administrative Secretary of INEC has for reasons unknown refused to make public the collation of results from Orhionmwon LGA.
Orhionmwon is one out of the 12 LGAs identified by YIAGA AFRICA as hotspot during the Edo Governorship election is also the Local Government Council of the APC Governorship candidate, Osagie Ize-Iyamu.