The coast is now clear for Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu to contest for the governorship ticket of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State as the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party on Thursday night granted him a waiver to participate at the party’s primary.
The committee also adopted direct primary option for the emergency of the party’s flagbearer for September 19, 2020 Edo State governorship election.
A source at the meeting which ran into late hours of Thursday night said NWC granted waiver for the former Chief of Staff and Secretary to the Edo State government in view of the electoral value he will had to the fortunes of the ruling party in the state.
Ize-Iyamu, believed to be the endorsed candidate of Comrade Adams Oshiomole, National Chairman of the party, recently decamped to the ruling party in the state. He was the gubernatorial candidate of the Edo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the 2016 Edo State gubernatorial election.
The NWC also adopted the direct primary option for the Edo State APC governorship primary slated for June 22, 2020.
It was gathered that NWC had resolved to adopt the option earlier used in the state for the governorship primary. This the committee further noted would give every card carrying member of the party to determine who the flagbearer is for the state governorship election.
On Ondo State governorship primary slated for 20th July, 2020, our source at the meeting said the committee was yet to consider the Ondo State primary. “We have a month after Edo State primary before Ondo State. We only delibrated on Edo State. We shall do that of Ondo very soon,” our source hinted.
When contacted on phone the National Publicity Secretary (NPS) of the party, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu confirmed the direct primary as option adopted for the party’s Edo State gubernatorial primary. “Yes the NWC adopted the direct primary for Edo State and we also granted wavier for a governorship aspirant,” the NPS confirmed.
Those at the NWC meeting chaired by the National Chairman, had in attendance, the Deputy National Chairman (South), Senator Abiola Ajimobi, National Vice-Chairman (North-West), Inuwa Abdulkadir and his counterpart from the South-South, Hilliard.
Other are the acting National Secretary, Waziri Bulama, National Organising Secretary, Emma Ibidiro and National Legal Adviser, Babatunde Ogala.
Commending what he called landmark decisions by the National Working Committee, the pro-Oshiomole Edo State APC Chairman, Hon. David Imuse in a telephone interview said the NWC did what is right for Edo State. He also welcomed the wavier granted Ize-Iyamu.
According to the APC chieftain, “the NWC have the constitutional right to do what they have done. The adoption of direct primary is within the capacity of the committee. On Ize-Iyamu, in all political parties, anybody that is seen as an asset to the party, NWC is empowered to grant waiver and they did just that. Ize-Iyamu is an asset to the party and the waiver is welcome by the party,” Imuse stated