The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has declared that Osagie Ize-Iyamu, the Edo State governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), is no match for any of its own aspirants.
The PDP said this in a statement issued by Kola Ologbondiyan, its National Publicity Secretary, in reaction to Ize-Iyamu’s emergence as the APC candidate for the Edo governorship election scheduled for 19 September.
According to the major opposition party, the choice of Ize-Iyamu only indicates a failure of the APC as he was foisted on the members of the party by its leadership.
The PDP claimed that the APC candidate emerged through the crudest governorship primary ever conducted in the history of the country, adding that “the people of Edo state had written off the APC, turned the party into a butt of street joke, as well as a new metaphor for disdain for the people”.
The statement read: “Already, on the streets of Edo state, Ize-Iyamu has become the new lexicon for APC’s crude attempt to suppress and lord it over the people of Edo state.
“From all indications, only failure awaits the APC in the September election. This is because, going by the figures announced from the direct primary, which the APC conducted to produce Ize-Iyamu, it is clear that the totality of the members of the APC in Edo is far below 40,000, in a state where the membership and support base of the PDP soar well above three million.”
The PDP wondered why Ize-Iyamu is now the darling of the ruling party in the state after Adams Oshiomhiole, the suspended APC National Chairman, had prior to the 2016 governorship election said he is not fit to occupy the office of the governor of Edo state for reasons he had also put in public space.
“Edo people can also recall how Oshiomhole swore before God and man that people with the character traits of Ize-Iyamu should not be allowed anywhere near a public office like that of a governor.
“It is therefore nauseating that having degraded Ize-Iyamu across Edo state and beyond, the APC, in their arrogance and disrespect for the leaders and the people Edo, want to foist such an individual on the state through a shambolic primary election,” the statement read.
The PDP said it is ready to engage in an issue-based campaign with Ize-Iyamu, although it doubted that he be the APC’s eventual candidate following the crisis rocking the Edo State chapter of the ruling party.
Three aspirants – Godwin Obaseki, the incumbent Edo State Governor; Ogbeide Ihama and Kenneth Imasuagbon – will contest to get the PDP’s sole ticket on Thursday.
Gideon Ikhine, one of the aspirants, stepped down for Governor Obaseki on Monday.