13 July 2016
INEC says it is Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu that it recognises as the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the Sept. 10 governorship election in Edo State.
Its Deputy Director for Voter Education and Publicity, Mr Nick Dazang, said a court decision informed INEC’s decision to recognise Ize-Iyamu.
Ize-Iyamu emerged winner at the primary organised by PDP National Caretaker Committee, led by Sen. Ahmed Makarfi.
“The commission collected the nomination from the Makarfi-led faction because he has a court judgment that says INEC should accept his candidate.
“Secondly, you will recall that it is only his own faction of PDP primarily that the commission monitored,’’ Dazang said.
The Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff-led faction of the PDP submitted the name of Matthew Iduoriyekwemwen as its candidate for the Sept. 10 polls.
Dazang said the commission had received nominations forms from 19 out of the 30 registered political parties in the country including the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the election.
He listed some as: Action Alliance, African Democratic Congress, Advance Congress of Democrats, Allied Congress Party of Nigeria, All Progressives Grand Alliance, Citizens Popular Party and Independent Democrats, among others.
INEC had earlier said that it would await final outcome of court cases in deciding on PDP’s candidate for the governorship election in Edo.
The Makarfi’s group, supported by all organs of the party, including the Governors’ Forum and the Board of Trustees, conducted its primary on June 20 in Benin and elected Osagie Ize-Iyamu as its candidate.
On June 29, in another primary also in Benin, but which was not supervised by INEC as required by the Electoral Act, Sheriff’s faction picked Matthew Iduoriyekwemwen as the party’s candidate for the same election.
On July 4, a Federal High Court which sat in Port Harcourt held that the May 21 national convention that removed Sheriff as chairman and constituted the National Caretaker Committee was duly constituted.
The court also declared that the dissolution of the National Working Committee and the National Executive Committee by that convention was valid.
In the judgment, Justice Abdullahi Liman, declared that the appointment of the caretaker committee to oversee the party’s affairs was legal and in line with the provisions of PDP Constitution.