Former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie Oyegun, Wednesday, September 28, attributed his party loss in the just concluded edo governorshipelection to impunity in the party and imposition of candidate, just as he added that the electorate voted inline with their conscience.
The governorship election which was held on Saturday, September 19 was won by the incumbent governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki of the Peoples Democratic Party.
In an interview with newsmen in Benin, Chief Oyegun commended President Muhammadu Buhari for allowing the people will to prevail without interfering.
While lauding His Royal Majasty, Oba Ewuare II, for the timely intervention at brokering peace between the major actors of the APC and the PDP, the former national chairman commended efforts of the National Peace Committee (NPC) headed by former head of state, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, the media and the international community among others for their role at ensuring that peace prevailed before, during and after the poll.
“It is impunity within the party, attempts imposition within the party; these are the issues, just let things flow”.
“I was a former national chairman and in most cases we didn’t have court cases after any election because things were done to the latter. If ten people feel each of them are capable of discharging the duties of that office let them contest,” he said.
Oyegun who adjudged the election as one of the most peaceful Nigeria has ever had, noted that the nation politics has regressed from due process of allowing internal democracy.
His words, “I think this is the most peaceful election in this nation since the June 12 Abiola election, and one will have to say that this is a precursor of the future, and that in the future, all concerned be allowed to have their say. The greatest problem we have in this country has been lack of due process; lack of respect for our own constitution whether within the various parties or outside that.”
“To my mind, we have regressed as far as party politics is concerned, because we have departed from due process, allowing free and fair selection processes within parties. And if parties don’t practice democracy, I don’t see how they can preach democracy to the people of this nation.”
“Fortunately Edo state is the Heart Beat of the nation, so this election has proved one more time that we are truly the Heart Beat of the Nigerian nation, and we hope it is something that we copied for future elections in this nation.”
On issues of election petition tribunal and allegation of compromises due to violence, activities of security agencies and INEC officials he stated that, “It is the constitutional right of anybody, candidate or no candidate to approach the judicial system for redress if they feel aggrieved. So, anybody who wants to go to court is only exercising his constitutional right, and he is to provide evidence to show that things happened which could have altered the ultimate results.”