The Edo State chapter of Labour Party, LP, has raised the alarm that its members and supporters who turned out to collect their Permanent Voter Card, PVC, are being intimidated and attacked across the state by thugs the party alleged sponsored by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
INFO DAILY had reported that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, had raised similar alarm of disruption of collection of PVCs in some centres and intimidation of its staffs by thugs yesterday, Saturday, January 7.
The state Publicity Secretary of LP, Comrade Sam Uroupa, who confirmed the attack in a statement made available to INFO DAILY on Sunday, said the thugs invaded various collection centres, attacked LP members and supporters who were on queue to collect their PVCs and warned INEC staffs not to attend to anyone until their members (PDP) have all collected theirs.
Uroupa who said he also witness one the attacks and he consequently received the beating of his life, added that the thugs are not just attacking LP members, but also destroying billboards belonging to Labour Party candidates.
His statement reads in part: “Report reaching the Edo State Labour Party from some PVC collection centres says that thugs allegedly sponsored by PDP are attacking and preventing Labour Party members from collecting PVCs.
“According to the report, the thugs specifically warned the INEC officials that if their PDP members have not collected, no body else will be allowed to get their PVC.
“In ward 6 Ikpoba Okha LGA, some PDP thugs allegedly led by one Apostle by name invaded the PVC collection exercise and beat up the people when they observed that majority of those on the queue are Obedient members.
” It was suspected that these were the same people who carried out the attack on LP secretariat at Ugbekun ward 7 Ikpoba Okha LGA some time in December last year to forcefully take over the office.
“In ward 9 Ogheghe Health Center, Ikpoba Okha LGA, the situation was not different as the PDP thugs in the community distrupted the exercise chasing everybody, including the INEC staffs and made away with the PVCs to prevent LP members from collecting.
“Though it was reported that they later returned the PVCs but the exercise could not continue again as the INEC staffs were apprehensive of their own safety.
“Similarly, in Oghede ward 10 Ovia North East LGA, the LP chairman was attacked by PDP thugs and his cellphone was destroyed during the PVC distribution exercise. The same PDP leaders and their thugs succeeded in taking the INEC officials to an hotel where it was suspected that some PVCs were handed over.
“In Oluku ward 6 Ovia North East LGA, the ward chairman suffered the same fate as he was attacked by hoodlums suspected to be PDP thugs.
“At some other locations it was heavy gun shots to scare people away and cause panic.
“Because the PDP have seen the handwriting, they resorted to violence against members of our great party the LP. As we speak, at Egor, over 50 (fifty) mini campaign billboards of our House of Assembly candidate for Egor constituency, Hon. Derrick Uhunmwagho has been destroyed and taken away by the PDP hired thugs because they are afraid of going into the election with all our candidates,” the statement added.
The Publicity Secretary who said Labour Party and its teaming supporters would not be deterred by intimidation, adding that the party is determined to “deliver Nigeria from the evil grip of APC and PDP, we are not going to lose focus on our rescue mission.”
“Nigerians have suffered enough in the hands of these two parties, our economy is in shambles and security of lives and property is totally zero,” he added.
While calling on the security agents to intervene, Uroupa added: “We want to use this medium to appeal to well meaning Nigerians, the security agencies, all Edolites and the general public to please call the Edo State PDP to order.”
Efforts by INFO DAILY to reach the Publicity Secretary of PDP in the state proved abortive as his cellphone number was not going through.
Why Uzodimma Was Replaced As Edo Gov Primary Chair — APC
The ruling All Progressives Congress on Thursday clarified the reason Governor Hope Uzodimma of Imo State was replaced with his Cross River counterpart, Bassey Otu, as Chairman of the Edo governorship primary election.
Addressing a press conference in Abuja on Thursday, National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Felix Morka, said the governor was “unavoidably unavailable” to complete the primary election, hence the need to replace him with his deputy.
The party announced the changes in a statement issued by APC National Organising Secretary, Sulaiman Argungu on Wednesday.
The changes were made a few hours after four leading Edo State governorship aspirants passed a vote of no confidence in the governor.
The governor had announced Dennis Idahosa as the winner while returning officer Stanley Ugboaja declared Monday Okpebholo as the winner.
Elsewhere, Ojo Babatunde, who claimed to be representing the returning officers in all the local governments, declared Anamero Dekeri the winner of the election.
On Tuesday, the national leadership of the APC in Abuja declared Saturday’s primary inconclusive.
The ruling party, however, raised an eyebrow when a section of the media reported that the Imo State governor was sacked.
The National Publicity Secretary of the APC appealed for understanding, saying the party did not sack Uzodimma as reported.
Morka said, “The attention of the All Progressives Congress has been drawn to reports in sections of the media suggesting that the Governor of Imo State, and Chairman of the Progressives Governors’ Forum, His Excellency, Hope Uzodinma, was sacked or dropped as the Chairman of the Edo Gubernatorial Primary Election Committee, and replaced with the Governor of Cross River State, His Excellency, Bassey Otu.
“We wish to clarify that Governor Uzodinma was neither “sacked” nor “dropped”, as has been erroneously reported, but was unavoidably unavailable to lead the completion of the Party’s Edo State Gubernatorial Primary Election Process due to his prior scheduled attendance of, and presentation of a report, to the National Economic Council meeting today February 22, 2024.
“As a result, His Excellency Bassey Otu, Governor of Cross Rivers State, who was the Deputy Chairman of the Committee, graciously accepted to serve as Chairman, and to complete the Edo State Gubernatorial Primary Election Process.”
Edo Guber: Ighodalo Wins Edo PDP Primary
Barrister Asue Ighodalo has been declared winner of the Peoples Democratic Party primary ahead of the Edo State governorship election slated for September 21, 2024.
He was declared winner of the primary conducted today by the National Working Committee of the party and monitored by officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium lawn tennis court.
Asue Ighodalo was announced by the Chief Returning Officer, Dauda Lawal, governor of Zamfara state.
He was declared to have polled 577 votes while Edo State deputy governor Philip Shaibu polled 1 vote. Anslem Ojezua, Felix Akhabue, Amb. Martins.
Barr. Esene. Polled zero respectively.
Omoregie Ogbeide-Ihama and Omosede Igbinadion announced there Withdrawal from the race before voting started. A total of 6 votes were void.
Meanwhile, the Edo Deputy governor Philip Shaibu had emerged winners earlier today in a separate primary held in his official resident.
More details to come…
UPDATED: Gunshots As Shaibu Emerges As Candidate In PDP Parallel Primary
The Edo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP,) on Thursday held a parallel Congress that produced the deputy governor of the state, Philip Shaibu is the candidate.
While some delegates were being accredited to proceed to the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium venue of the primary election, another set of delegates met in a facility in Commercial Avenue where they announced Shaibu the elected candidate of the PDP.
They claimed that they went to the venue for accreditation but were chased away by security agencies. They also alleged that the list of delegates published by the national leadership of the party was not the authentic one alleging that they saw names of people from Bayelsa state and names of people who are members of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Declaring Shaibu winner of the election, Bartholomew Moses said “During the counting of this primary election, Philip Shaibu has a score of 301 votes and therefore, we hereby declare Philip Shaibu as the authentic elected candidate for this election in the PDP”
The people had barely finished their exercise when gunmen invaded the venue. They were dressed in vigilante outfits and came in several vehicles including two black unmarked Toyota Hiace Truck, an unmarked white sienna, a white Hilux and several other vehicles. They were shooting sporadically into the air and the people scampered in different directions for safety
Before the election, the delegates led by Festus Owu had protested to the deputy governor’s official lodge where they complained to him that they had been disenfranchised.
Speaking to the protesting delegates, Shaibu said “I appeal to all of you to be peaceful I don’t want anybody to be injured, I don’t want anybody molested and I am happy the way you have conducted yourselves peacefully and have come to report to me that you were not allowed to be accredited but I want to tell you that no one man can determine the destiny of a people and by the grace of God they cannot disenfranchise you people.
“The law is clear that you people are the authentic delegates. Now that they have pushed you away, they want to go and replace you but I assure you that your vote must count, they cannot change and replace your names. I assure you that I will take your protest to the committee that is coming but you must remain peaceful in everything you are doing.”
Speaking to journalists later, Shaibu said “I saw the crowd outside and I asked who they are and they said they are delegates, I said they should be directed to the venue of the accreditation but they said they were protesting because they have been sent away from the venue if accreditation and they won their election and they have their results.
“The election will hold and if a winner emerges with fake delegates, the election will not see the light of the day but if a winner emerges with the authentic delegate, there will be no problem, I am sure.”
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