• Wednesday, July 24, 2024
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Ekwo’s judgement, a temporary setback, says PDP at Edo 2024 campaign council launch


The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Saturday, in Abuja, inaugurated the Edo 2024 gubernatorial campaign council, describing the July 4 High Court judgement by Iyang Ekwo, as a “ temporary setback, which the party will over come”.

BusinessDay gathered that the party has already put in place a strong legal team to file an appeal on Monday. next week.

Ekwo of the Federal High Court, Abuja, had declared that the PDP primary election conducted on February 22, 2024, void, on the ground that “ 378 delegates, who were to vote at the primary election were unlawfully excluded by the party”.

The judge had ruled that both the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 and the PDP guidelines were violated in the conduct of the primary election at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

But Ahmadu Fintiri, Adamawa State Governor and Chairman of the 2024 PDP Edo gubernatorial Campaign Council, while addressing the members at the inauguration ceremony in Abuja, on Saturday, noted that “ there is a little setback, temporarily” adding that “God will see us through it”.

“Referring to the three days, I mean, three days ago’s court judgment, anybody who peruse and look through the entire process, you know that is a child’s play. This is what will not stand in the court of law, particularly that we will be approaching the court of appeal,” Fintiri said.

Fintiri who urged members of the Council not to be deterred, added that the party will do everything necessary within its powers to win the September, 2024 governorship election.

“And that shouldn’t deter us. We will put more commitment, more work than we have not intended to do earlier so that we will put our detractors into shame. And this is what we know best. We will support our candidate with everything at our disposal. We will not shy away from putting in our best. I will be guided by the experiences of the senior stakeholders here with us,” he added.

He assured that the party is good to commence the campaigns.

“I I think we are good to go. And for me, I am ready to lead this campaign. I have made a commitment on the day we are inaugurated. And I really mean every word I said that day. So like I said, I am going to do and have experiences so that we work better, work together, and we deliver together. Once for all, you are all welcome,” he said.

Adeyemi Ajibade, the party’s legal adviser, informed members of the Edo Campaign Council that the Court did not nullify the primary that produced Asue Ighodalo and Osarodion Ogie as the candidate and the running mate respectively.

According to him, “ The court did not nullify our primary. The issue before the court was basically the issue of a delegate election. And we know very much that the Supreme Court has pronounced that issue of delegates is purely an internal affair of the political party.

“And to kill these issues that we normally have in the past, whereby anybody can be sponsored to go and challenge primary, to go and set aside, to go and disqualify a candidate, that was why the National Assembly introduced the provision of section 84, subsection 14,” Ajibade said.

He disclosed that although the state has about eight cases over the PDP. primaries, seven have been dispensed with, leaving one outstanding.

He expressed confidence that the rest will also favour the party.

“ We certainly know that where you have a party that is this popular, the struggle for the ticket will be fierce. So there is no doubt about that. It is not strange. Out of the eight cases, we are done with seven. We have one outstanding before the court. And by God’s grace, it will go the same way the six cases have gone,” he said.

“ It is only an aspirant that participates in an election, in a primary election.

“So we were taken aback and surprised that the last case pending before him, he made a somersault. But just like I said, in the wisdom of the judge, he saw that maybe from a different angle, we should know that by the time we get to the apex court, we’ll be able to put our record in a proper perspective.

“It’s not the first time we are handling this kind of matter. During the 2023 governorship election, we had similar issues that moved from a federal court up to the Supreme Court and were victorious.

“All I want to say here is that members of the campaign council, please don’t be discouraged by what you heard. Some of you can also pick up this CTC and Perus and see that our candidate is unshakable”.

Lucky Igbinedon, former Governor of Edo state, in his remarks, described Fintiri as a “ dogged fighter, who will replicate his doggedness in wining the governorship election for PDP in the state.

“We know how he fought to win again Adamawa, even with the mighty powers of the federal government.

“We want to congratulate you and also show that doggedness in those things. Talking about our candidates, there is no doubt that you are working hard.

“So if it is hard work that translates to victory, we have already won. Because this is a man that has toyed and been to every nook and cranny in those things.

“We have 192 wards in the state and he has been to all of them. So if it is reaching out to the people, he has reached out to them.

If it is talking like the man wey Sabi, he Sabi very well.

“I want us to carry this through. I am fully committed to say that PDP continues in those things. I have never wavered and I will never waver. PDP is in my DNA and I will assure and ensure and do all that is necessary that victory is ours come September.

And we shall be back in government house in November with the PDP government. So once again, it is my great pleasure to be here and I want you to know that you have my full support and commitment to ensuring that we of the PDP family continue in those things.

Asue Ighodalo, in his remarks, said he will do everything it takes to win the 2024 election, come September.

“I want to assure that we’ll give this everything we have. We’ll give it our 150% commitment. We will ensure that we make this, our great party, extremely proud to have presented us as their candidates,” Ighodalo said.

“And by God’s grace, when we get into government house, we will work so hard that our party will be more than proud that we’re the flag bearer and the deputy flag bearer and we’re setting the trail.”

“What we intend to do by God’s grace is to move the state forward, regardless of the boundaries of the sovereign, into a first world state. And we hope by the grace of God, by the support of everybody in this room, we’ll fully achieve this task. It’s a task that must indeed be done”.