2019 Gubernatorial Race Stiffened As Party Accuses Each Other Of Plotting Rigging

In Edo State, the PDP has accused Governor Godwin Obaseki of resorting to blackmail, intimidation and harassment of traders in the state with a view to forcing them to vote for the APC in Saturday’s House of Assembly elections. There is no governorship election in the state. The PDP said the state government financially induced various market leaders at New Benin, Oba Market, Etinosa Market and Ekiuwa market to force traders to join an “Apology March” to Government House scheduled for tomorrow to beg APC National Chairman Adams Oshiomhole and Obaseki for forgiveness.

Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Mr. Chris Nehikhare, in a statement, said the traders were to pledge their loyalty to APC or lose their stalls. Nehikhare urged the traders to resist the threat. The Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, described the allegation as a creation of the PDP. Osagie said it would take someone suffering from horrific hallucination to imagine that Obaseki would hurt interest of the traders after prioritising their wellbeing through several reforms of trade practices. He noted that some of the traders might not have obtained degrees from universities but they were more intelligent than Nehikhare.


In Bayelsa, an APC chieftain Yekini Nabena, alerted of an arms build-up in the state ahead of State Assembly election. Nabena accused the government of plotting to use armed thugs to rig the election in favour of the PDP. According to him, the alarm being raised by Governor Seriake Dickson was diversionary. Nabena, who is the Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the APC, cited a security report which uncovered the arms build-up in the state. He said: “The Seriake Dickson-led PDP administration has become very unpopular and stands rejected in Bayelsa State. The governor, in desperation has turned to violence and manipulation of the elections to suppress the people and keep PDP in power in the state.”Nabena called on the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu to urgently probe the illegal activities of the state security outfit, Operation Doo Akpo, which he said was used by the governor and other chieftains of the PDP to aid rigging during the Presidential and National Assembly election in Bayelsa State. But the State Chairman of the PDP, Moses Cleopas, raised the alarm that over 2000 members of the party who fled Nembe Bassambiri on the eve of the Presidential/National Assembly elections, were being prevented from returning to their homes.Cleopas urge the Federal Government and the relevant security agencies to intervene in the tense security situation in Nembe Bassambiri, where thugs alleged backed by soldiers attacked PDP members. The PDP chair also called on the Nigerian Army High Command to deploy a fresh set of soldiers to Nembe and Brass local government areas, alleging that the troops earlier deployed in the areas had been compromised.

The Nation

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