SINCE the conclusion of the primaries for governorship, National Assembly and House of Assembly elections of the various parties, especially the All Progressives Congress, APC, and Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, there have been plots and counter-plots in the parties in the South-South. Our correspondents report.
There is tension between Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State and the National Chairman of the party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, who is from the state.
There are insinuations among the supporters of Oshiomhole that the governor is trying to build his structure ahead of his second term bid in 2020 and wants to ensure that his loyalists dominate the next state House of assembly. They also believe that his loyalty to the structure that brought him to power has failed with his actions and style of governance in the last two years.
Sunday Vanguard reliably gathered that this was one of the reasons the committee sent to Edo by the national secretariat of the party to conduct the party primaries did not announce the results of the state House of Assembly shadow elections and, at press time, the names of winners have not been officially released.
There are allegations that shocking replacements were being made by the national secretariat to have a state House of Assembly that would not be loyal to the governor. This, it was gathered, is part of the long term plan to puncture his return to Osadebey Avenue in 2020.
The party conducted the primaries twice and, even then, there are still protests from some members. The first exercise was cancelled by the National Working Committee, NWC, of APC as it said the committee from the national secretariat was not on ground to conduct the exercise. A fresh exercise was conducted and, since then, dust has been raised by several members across the state.
One contentious area is Akoko-Edo Federal Constituency where the Chairman of the committee in charge of the primaries, Hajia Farida Suleman Odangi, said the result was not ready because of violence in some areas and that the incidents would be investigated and a decision taken by the national secretariat of the party.
The Speaker of Edo State House of Assembly, Hon Kabiru Adjoto, contested the seat in the constituency with the incumbent, Hon Peter Akpatason. The national secretariat submitted Akpatason as its candidate for the election.
Sunday Vanguard gathered that Adjoto has headed for court as he believes he won the primary election. This is notwithstanding a meeting Oshiomhole held with the two contenders in Abuja where he was said to have appealed to Adjoto to support Akpatason, having been one of the lawmakers who stood by the party during the crisis in the National Assembly that led to defections.