Shaibu: Why I'm the valid candidate of PDP for Edo governorship election

Philip-Shuaibu

Philip Shuaibu

…Shaibu faulted declaration of Ighodalo as the winner of the primary

By Deborah Coker

Deputy Governor, Mr Philip Shaibu, on Saturday faulted the declaration of Asue Ighodalo as the candidate of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP for the September 2024 Edo governorship election as he insisted that he is the rightful flagbearer of the party.

Shaibu who spoke to journalists also said though he has suffered so much intimidation and harassment over his ambition, he will not be deterred from the pursuit of his ambition.

Ighodalo defeated about nine other candidates including the Deputy Governor of the state in the election.

He had vote 577 votes to become the candidate of the PDP in the Sept. 21 governorship election in the state while his closest rival garnered one vote.

The Chairman, Edo PDP Primary Electoral Committee and Gov of Dauda Lawal Zamfara declared him as the winner of the exercise.

However, in a parallel exercise, Shaibu was declared winner of the election.

The returning officer, Bartholomew Moses, declared: “during the counting of this primary election, Philip Shaibu has a score of 301 votes.

“Therefore, I hereby declare Philip Shaibu as the authentic elected candidate for this election in the PDP.”

But Shaibu faulted the declaration of Ighodalo as the winner of the primary as he claimed the PDP did not follow its own rules in the conduct of the exercise.

The deputy governor also alleged that elections were about contestation, noting that the other primary that produced Ighodalo as its candidate disenfranchised 381 delegates.

He said if the party truly desired to win the election on Sept. 21 it would field a popular and competent candidate not impose a candidate on the people.

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He also said that the PDP must adhere to the electoral laws and party guidelines to be able to win the upcoming election in the state.

He explained that there were party guidelines for electing a governorship candidate, just as there is an electoral law guiding political activities.

Shaibu further said for the PDP to win the upcoming governorship election in the state, it should adhere strictly to its own rules and guidelines.

“The electoral law forbids exclusion. An election can be re-ordered because of exclusion, it is a major sin that the law forbids“, he told newsmen.

He said though political parties have the right to produce candidates, such rights must comply with the electoral laws and the party’s own guidelines.

“If the guideline is not followed in the process of producing your candidate, that candidate cannot see the light of day.

“So the ultimate right of any party is to follow your rules in producing your candidate”, Shaibu said.

He alleged so much intimidation and harassment of people in the build up to the primary.

“The level of intimidation and harassment meted out to me and those people who believe in me was beyond comprehension, yet it does not actually change our resolve in what we believe in.

“People were sacked, some civil servants were suspended, others transferred from their position and taken away from their family comfort to different places, all because they were associating with me.

“Well, I dare say that anybody still intimidating or harassing anybody means that he is not ready to win an election“, he told newsmen.

He, therefore, said that his emergence as a candidate was no longer about him but the people, adding that it was imperative the party listened to the voice of the people.

(NAN)

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