Gunshots As Shaibu Emerges Winner In Edo PDP Parallel Primary

Gunshots As Shaibu Emerges Winner In PDP Parallel Primary

In an unusual turn of events, the Edo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) conducted a parallel congress on Thursday, declaring the state’s Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu, as the party’s candidate.

This development has intensified the existing divisions within the party, as delegates were split between two distinct factions.

As preparations were underway for the primary election at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, a separate group of delegates convened on Commercial Avenue.

It was at this alternative venue that Shaibu was announced as the elected candidate of the PDP, diverging from the official proceedings at the stadium.

The group that assembled on Commercial Avenue claimed they had initially attempted to participate in the accreditation process at the stadium but were forcibly removed by security personnel.

They further alleged discrepancies in the delegate list provided by the national leadership of the PDP, accusing the party of including individuals from Bayelsa State and members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) among the Edo PDP delegates.

Declaring Shaibu winner of the election, Bartholomew Moses said, “During the counting of this primary election, Philip Shaibu has a score of 301 votes, and therefore, we hereby declare Philip Shaibu as the authentic elected candidate for this election in the PDP.”

The people had barely finished their exercise when gunmen invaded the venue.

They were dressed in vigilante outfits and came in several vehicles, including two black unmarked Toyota Hiace Truck, an unmarked white Ssienna, a white Hilux and several other vehicles.

They were shooting sporadically into the air, and the people scampered in different directions for safety.

Before the election, the delegates led by Festus Owu had protested at the deputy governor’s official lodge, where they complained to him that they had been disenfranchised.

Speaking to the protesting delegates, Shaibu said, “I appeal to all of you to be peaceful I don’t want anybody to be injured, I don’t want anybody molested and I am happy the way you have conducted yourselves peacefully and have come to report to me that you were not allowed to be accredited but I want to tell you that no one man can determine the destiny of a people and by the grace of God they cannot disenfranchise you, people.

“The law is clear that you people are the authentic delegates. Now that they have pushed you away, they want to go and replace you but I assure you that your vote must count, they cannot change and replace your names.

“I assure you that I will take your protest to the committee that is coming but you must remain peaceful in everything you are doing.”

Speaking to journalists later, Shaibu said, “I saw the crowd outside and I asked who they are and they said they are delegates, I said they should be directed to the venue of the accreditation but they said they were protesting because they have been sent away from the venue if accreditation and they won their election and they have their results.

“The election will hold and if a winner emerges with fake delegates, the election will not see the light of the day but if a winner emerges with the authentic delegate, there will be no problem, I am sure.”

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