Edo PDP Divided as Party Conducts Parallel Primaries for State Assembly, House of Representatives Candidates

Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City

The division in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Edo State reared its head yesterday as the party reportedly conducted parallel congress to elect candidates to fly its flag for the House of Assembly and House of Representatives.

The parallel elections were conducted by the two factions loyal to Governor Godwin Obaseki and the supporter of the party Vice Chairman, South-South, Chief Dan Orbih.
Findings revealed that parallel primaries took place in almost all the local governments except Ikpoba-Okha, Egor, Oredo in Edo South Senatorial district.

For instance in Oredo local government area which has two constituency seats for the State House of Assembly and one seat in the House of Representatives, Sunny Aguebor emerged as the House of Representatives candidate while Dr. Aisosa Amadasun emerged as the House of Assembly candidate for Oredo West and Uyi Omosigho for Oredo East constituency.

In Egor and Ikpoba-Okha, Henry Okhuarobo emerged as the House of Assembly candidate while Natasha Osawaru clinched the ticket for Ikpoba-Okha and the ticket for Egor/Ikpoba-Okha federal Constituency went to Jude Ise-Idehen.

But in Edo Central, where Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Marcus Onobun, an acolyte of Obaseki emerged as the candidate for House of Representatives for Esan West/Esan Central/Igueben Federal Constituency, there was a parallel primary election held by the Orbih-led group.

 It was the same result in Edo North as Obaseki’s men including former Speaker, Kabiru Adjoto emerged as House of Representatives candidates for Akoko-Edo federal constituency while former deputy speaker, Yekini Idaiye and current Commissioner for Community and Chieftaincy, Donald Okogbe emerged as candidates for House of Assembly for Akoko-Edo Constituency I and II respectively.

 In Owan Federal Constituency, Hon Jimoh Ijegbai emerged as the candidate for the House of Representatives while Blessing Agbebaku emerged as the candidate for Owan West for the House of Assembly.
The Commissioner for Information, Adaze Ewanta described the exercise as a free and fair and denied report of parallel congress.

“Here in Egor, this is the designated place for the primary. All the security agencies are here as you can see so I am not aware of any primary,” while Ise-Idehen said his nomination for Egor/Ikpoba-Okha federal constituency was for him to do more.

However, it’s wasn’t a smooth sail for the governor’s men as there were reported cases of parallel primaries in Owan East, Esan West, Ovia South West, Etsako West and Akoko-Edo local government areas.

In Owan East, Obaseki’s faction held it primaries at Pa Imoudu Institute of Education, Afuze, while the Orbih group’s election took place at the council’s PDP secretariat, also in Afuze.

As at press time, the full list of candidates from either faction was still being collated with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officials present in the factional primaries.

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