There are indications that all is not well with the Edo State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress following controversies attending Saturday’s  governorship primaries in the state.

Although the Hope Uzodima-led committee had announced the victory of Dennis Idahosa in the contest, Senator Monday Okpebholo, has also claimed victory at the polls.

See Senator Okpebholo is said to be the anointed candidate of the national secretariat of the party and the presidency, while Idahosa is backed by former governor Adams Oshomole.

There had been fears among party faithfuls that the leader of the party in the state, Adams Oshiomhole had concluded plans to foist Idahosa on the party.

On the eve of the primary election, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu withdrew from the race with a directive to his supporters to cast their votes for Senator Okpebholo on the strength that he had been endorsed by the Presidency.

Okpebholo was known to have strongly supported Ize-Iyamu on the two occasions he contested for the gubernatorial election in 2016 and 2020 on the platforms of the PDP and the APC respectively.

It was gathered while Governor Uzodima was announcing Idahosa as winner of the election with 40,448 votes, Dr Stanley Ugboaja, the Returning Officer was still overseeing the counting of the ballots at the Collation Centre.

Dr Ugboaja, at the end of the collation of results from the 18 local government areas, announced that Senator Okpebholo scored 12,194 votes to emerge winner of the election and to become the APC’s standard bearer in the scheduled September 21, 2024 governorship election.

While that confusion was going on, the immediate past Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Clem Ikanade Agba, who contested the primaries has claimed that he actually won the election.

While reacting to the results announced, Agba told his supporters that he was the winner of the polls based in the authentic party members who turned out on Saturday.

“To my good people of Edo State and esteemed members of our great party, the All Progressives Congress, I want to thank you for your loyalty and support for my candidature,” he said in a statement.

“Unfortunately, what we have all witnessed in the APC party primaries in Edo State on Saturday February 17th, 2024 falls below the minimum standard of democratic elections that is universally acceptable.

“I believe strongly that thousands of loyal party members were disenfrachished. Based on the authentic turnout, we clinched victory. The result so far announced is a ridicule and undermines the principles of democracy and fair play.

“Votes of the people did not count, processes of election were compromised and the strength and unity of our party greatly undermined.

“While I remain a loyal party member, I will not be part of a process that robs the mass of our loyal party members of their inalienable right to vote.

“What has taken place in Edo State negates all that even our political leaders have taught us over the years about democracy, the will of the people, one man, one vote and justice and fair play.

“We must come together to challenge this great injustice and restore the integrity and strength of our great party.

“Such impunity that the people have been subjected to should have no place in our great party.

“We will proceed speedily within the guidelines laid down by our party to seek for justice.

“I want to thank everyone that has supported me for your unwavering commitment and belief in our vision and qualification. Your passion and dedication have been the driving force behind our campaign, and I am truly grateful.

“As we move forward, remember that our journey is far from over. We will continue to fight for a better future for Edo State, a future where every citizen can thrive and succeed.

“Our resolve is unbreakable, and our commitment unwavering. We will not rest until justice is served and the people’s will is honoured.

“Thank you, and let us march forward with courage and conviction.”

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