Supreme Court verdict on Edo PDP: Obaseki, Orbih call for truce

Orbih and Gov. Obaseki

Dan Orbih and Gov. Godwin Obaseki

By Jethro Ibileke

Following Wednesday’s Supreme Court ruling on the legal tussle between two factions of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in Edo state, leaders of both factions have called on their respective supporters to embrace peace.

While Governor Godwin Obaseki lead one of the factions, the Deputy National Chairman (south-south) of the party, Chief Dan Orbih led the other faction, called Legacy Group.

Both factions elected candidates to feature in the 25 May and 11 March, 2023 national and state elections, which resulted in prolonged legal battles over which candidates to recognize.

Governor Obaseki in a statement he personally signed Wednesday night, called on all part members to see the development as a victory for all, adding that no victor, no vanquished.

On his part, Orbih in a statement Thursday afternoon, called for calm among Legacy Group members in particular, and PDP members at large.

Obaseki’s statement said:

“The ruling of the Supreme Court…finally put[s] to rest the long-drawn legal tussle over the candidates that will fly the flag of our great party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Edo State in the general election on the 25th of February and 11th of March 2023

“As the leader of the party in the State, I implore all members to consider this development as the end of all strife within the Edo PDP and to note that this is a victory for all members.

“Our resolve now is to win the forthcoming general elections as this experience has made us stronger and better prepared to clinch victory.

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“This disagreement which has now been amicably resolved attests to the maturity of actors who as law-abiding party members have subjected themselves to and accepted the verdict of the courts.

“As there are no victors or vanquished in this issue, I want to call on all members of our party to come together to speak with one voice against the real opponents since our party is big enough to accommodate our variegated interests.

“The ongoing crisis in our nation which has been choreographed by the All Progressives Congress (APC), is subjecting Nigerians to perhaps the most tortuous living conditions in our history since the Civil War between 1967 and 1970. Our efforts must now be directed to removing the APC from power and restoring our blessed Country.

“I, therefore, call on all our members in Edo State to stand up and be counted among the brave party men and women who stood to be counted in the execution of this all-important task to rescue Nigeria and pull it back from the precipice.”

In his statement, Orbih described the long-drawn struggle in the party in the state as “a patriotic fight for internal democracy, justice, inclusiveness, equity, and a better state.”

He said he had no regrets for insisting that “the principles of the party’s constitution and the interest of the majority of its members are respected and institutionalized through a fair and transparent democratic process”.

He therefore thanked all members of the Legacy Group for their “unwavering commitment to true democracy, justice, fairness and the progress of the party”,adding: “the fruits of your just struggle will manifest in due course”.

Orbih however threw a jab at the leadership of the party in the state, and apparently, at Governor Obaseki, who he said have abused the trust of the people.

He said: “We cannot bow to despondency or surrender to the seductive appeal of those who have abused the trust of the people and their obvious tyrannical tendencies.”

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