The National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, and the party, itself, have been insinuated to be in palpable panic as the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) commences screening of governorship aspirants for the September 2020 election in Edo State. Sources from the ruling party disclosed that the panic may not be unconnected with the lingering impasse between the APC national chairman and Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State. The party sources revealed that the APC leadership has been watching with keen curiosity the proceedings in the PDP, and has noticed that among the first three aspirants screened by the party, there is no strong aspirant yet. This, they said, raised apprehension over speculations that Governor Obaseki may decamp to the PDP for the governorship ticket. “There, the power of incumbency may work against the ruling party which will, however, rely on the federal might,” they said. They added that some other party leaders are considering that APC will maximize both the incumbency powers and the federal might if the party’s ticket is given to the current Edo governor.
Meanwhile, the PDP Screening Committee, inaugurated by the National Working Committee (NWC), on Friday commenced screening of governorship aspirants at the party’s National Secretariat, Abuja, for the Edo election.
Kingsley Chinda, a member of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly is Chairman of the five-member Screening Committee. The committee also constitutes Oladimeji Fabiyi, Senator Joy Emordi, Aishat Hasindu, and Boyele Debekeme – secretary.
Of the three aspirants screened by the committee on Friday, two aspirants, Gideon Ikhine and Ogbeide Ihama, appeared in person while one aspirant, Kenneth Imansuangbon, participated through virtual conferencing.
The Screening Committee Chairman, Kingsley Chinda, had said that the PDP is committed to selecting a credible and best candidate to retrieve Edo State from APC.
However, APC leaders were said to be red alert as the PDP goes ahead with the screening, watching closely over tentative last-minute switch game by the Edo governor. The APC is also preparing for screening of aspirants in the next one week.
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