Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar and Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State have congratulated Governor Godwin Obaseki on his victory in the Edo State governorship election held on Saturday.
Obaseki of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) who was seeking a second term of years defeated the All Progressive Party (APP), candidate Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu by 307,955 to 223,619 votes.
He was declared elected by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Benin City on Sunday afternoon.
Atiku in a statement posted on his verified Twitter handle described PDP victory in Edo as a new dawn in the state in particular and the country in general.
He said: “There is a new dawn in Edo State, and the hard-won victory of Governor Obaseki is not just a victory, but a Declaration of Independence from the anti-democratic forces of godfatherism and militarism.
“No victory could be sweeter than this, and I heartily congratulate the Governor and the good people of Edo state for their resilience in the face of the forces arrayed against them.
“Edo has a rich history as the centre of Black civilisation, and to this, she is adding a new record as the bastion of Nigerian democracy.
“This double whammy of ancient and modern glories is a testament to a people who have for centuries set the pace as a beacon of light on the African continent”.
The PDP candidate in the last presidential election congratulated “the Peoples Democratic Party, who stood shoulder to shoulder, with the people of Edo and their Government, in good times and bad. We in the PDP have shown that we are not fair-weather friends to the good people of Edo.
“In good times, we will walk beside you. In bad times, we will be your loyal ‘comrade’. We will never be a turncoat. We will never abandon the principles we once espoused so that we can dine with our nemesis. Democracy has no nemesis. And this, the PDP has again proved.
“I look forward to the continuation of four more years of tangible development, and people centered leadership from Governor Obaseki.
“I also seize this opportunity to thank His Royal Highness, the Oba of Benin, Omo N’oba N’Edo Uku Akpolopkolo, Ewuare II, for the fatherly role he played as a neutral catalyst for peace.
“That this election was, by and large, free from violence, is a testament of the long and effective shadow he casts over his domain”.
Atiku added: “From personal experience, I know Governor Obaseki to be a magnanimous man, and I urge Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu to accept the right hand of fellowship that is likely to be extended to him.
“The leprous hand he is now holding can only lead to a destination of barrenness. He is amongst strange bedfellows, & I remind him that no matter how far one has gone on a wrong road, it is never too late to turn back & head in the right direction. The PDP is the right direction.
“And to the good people of Ondo state, my message to you is that freedom from the oppressive grasp of godfathers and external forces that seek to dominate your will and eviscerate your treasury, is possible. Edo has done it. You can do it too!
“There is a new wind of democratic change now blowing all over Nigeria. The forces of despotism, nepotism, and interlopers cannot successfully withstand this force.
“Nigeria shall soon be totally free from these forces, from Kaura Namoda, to Lagos. The only power that will stand in Nigeria is people power, not the power of godfathers, or despots”, he stated.
On his part, Governor Okowa said: “I must commend INEC for a job-well-done in Edo Decides. It is my hope that the lessons learnt from this election, will be corrected in Ondo Decides — in order to continue to improve our electoral systems.
“With their loud and irrefutable votes in Edo Decides, the people of Edo State have sent a strong message that they choose to continue under Governor Godwin Obaseki’s development agenda to Make Edo Great Again!
“I congratulate my brother, Governor Obaseki, on this historic and thorough victory that has shown Edo State and the entire Nigeria that the will of the people always stands on the side of those that have their best interest”.