Edo LP reacts as Apapa camp presents another gov candidate

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Lamidi Apapa

Not more than 24 hours after Olumide Akpata emerged as the candidate of the Labour Party in the September 21 governorship election in Edo, the Alhaji Lamidi Apapa-led faction has also unveiled its candidate for the election.

The letter sighted on several social media platforms including the WhatsApp group of the Labour Party in Edo State was signed by Alhaji Lamidi Apapa as the acting National Chairman and Alhaji Saleh Lawan as the acting National Secretary.

Apapa gave the name of the governorship candidate as Anderson Asemota, while Monday Mawah was listed as Asemota’s running mate.

In an election conducted under Julius Abure-led national leadership of the Labour Party, Akpata had 316 votes defeating his contenders by a wide margin, with the closest aspirants, Ken Imasuagbon, popularly known as ‘Rice Man’, and Professor Sunny Eromosele scoring seven votes apiece.

Sergius Ogun scored four votes, Earnest Àyegbe scored three votes and Paul Iseghohi withdrew from the race.

However, the Apapa-led faction of the party in a letter dated February 22, 2024 and addressed to the National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in Abuja submitted the names of the party’s candidate and deputy governorship candidate respectively.

Apapa said the governorship candidate and his running mate emerged at a primary conducted on February 22, 2024, in Benin City.

When contacted on the phone, Apapa confirmed the letter. He simply said, “Yes it is true. The letter is from us.”

However, the Public Relations Officer of the Edo State LP, Sam Uroupa said that the only recognised primary held by the party was the one where Olumide Akpata emerged as the candidate for the governorship election in September.

He added that only one primary took place on Friday and he was not aware that another one took place in the state, adding that the election which threw up Akpata as candidate of the party was free, fair and credible.

Uroupa also urged the public to disregard the news of the purported primaries held by Apapa as the one conducted under the National Chairman, Julius Abure with the deputy governor of Abia state, Emechulu Ikecbukwu, as returning officer, the authentic one.

“I urge the public to disregard any claim by the Apapa-led faction that it conducted a primary election in Edo and has a candidate for the September 21 governorship election in the state.

“Olumide Akpata is the only candidate elected in a free, fair and credible election on Friday. He will be on the ballot in the election,” Uroupa added.

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