Accuses Deputy Governor’s Wife of Breaching Peace Pact.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State has expressed gratitude to the Oba of Benin, Ewuare II, for his recent intervention in the spate of violence and shootings that had characterized electioneering campaigns in the state ahead of the September 19 governorship election in the state, noting that it had cooled the political temperature.
The APC National Campaign Council asserted that the royal father’s observations only underscored its stand all along that violence had no place in civilized electioneering of selling programmes and ideas, stressing that a popular party and candidate have no cause to resort to violence.
The APC however accused the wife of the state deputy governor, Mary-Ann Shaibu of breaching the peace pact when she threatened to flog any woman in her campaign team who would be found in the camp of a rival party.
In a statement on Saturday by the national vice-chairman of the Edo APC Media Campaign Council, Patrick Obahiagbon, the party said “Yet again, we the Edo should all be proud that in Oba Ewuare 11, we have a wise, polished, accomplished, visionary and leader, who can counsel his subjects with royal firmness, from the patrician to the pauper; and earn the respect of them all”.
The statement noted that from the Oba’s interaction, it was clear where the violence was coming from, and expressed the hope that the other side would take the Oba’s wise counsel, drop their violence and thuggery, and embrace peaceful electioneering where both sides could freely sell their ideas.
According to Obahiagbon, “We have said it before and we are saying it again; we condemn any iota of violence on the campaign stump. We, the Edo APC, absolutely don’t need it. Our candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu is popular. His programmes, presented as the SIMPLE agenda, resonate with the masses of Edo people. To crown it all, our APC is a mass movement, entrenched throughout the length and breadth of Edo State. Why, should we then visit violence on our own people?”
The APC admonished its major opponent to turn a new leaf, reminding the governor and his deputy that there is life after elections.
“We advise Governor Obaseki to solemnly ponder the Oba’s advice to think of after office since he wouldn’t be governor forever. We also call on Deputy Governor Philip Shaibu to honour his pledge to the Oba to tell his armed thugs to ‘take it easy.’ That done, it added, we can go out and freely campaign to the Edo people on ideas and programmes”. Again reminding the PDP that September 19 was around the corner, the APC lamented that too much time, lives and limbs had already been wasted on violence.
“Let us all go out and sell our ideas. Violence helps nobody. Let the party with better and superior programmes win. And from what we have done on the campaign trail so far, the better side will be us on September 19. On that day, Pastor Ize-Iyamu will sweep the polls, not because of the rippling muscles of gun-toting thugs, but because of the cutting-edge of his ideas”.
The APC prayed for a very long reign, more wisdom and booming health for the foremost the Benin monarch, confident that “As long as our revered Oba lives, we know Edo will never go to seeds. That is why we pray, and will continue to pray, for his long, long reign.”