I `ll not challenge Edo Governorship election results, says Ize-Iyamu




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By Kevin Okunzuwa

 

Benin  -The in the Sept. 19 Governorship election in Edo, Osagie Ize-Iyamu, says he will not challenge the outcome of the election at the tribunal.

Ize-Iyamu made this known in a signed by Mr John Mayaki, his Director of Communication and Media on in Benin.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that this was Ize-Iyamu’s first official since the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Mr Godwin Obaseki of the PDP as winner of the election.

Ize-Iyamu said: “We must all continue to believe in the electoral process as an important part of the democratic system.

“It remains the best method of choosing who leads the people, devoid of and avoidable acrimony.”

He, however, noted that the said election was fraught some electoral irregularities, strong enough to warrant challenging its outcome.

According to him, contrary to orchestrated media reports, the election was neither free nor fair. There were several episodes of , intimidation of and falsification of results.

“In particular, there were unlawful cancellations of results, from Urhonigbe South and North in Orhiomwon.

“Results were falsified from many polling units in Ofunama in Ovia South-West, and in parts of Ovia North-East, Owan West, Oredo, Egor, Ikpoba-Okha, Esan North-East, Esan West, Esan South-East, and Uhunmwode Local Government areas.

“Sadly, two persons were during the election, while gun-wielding thugs took over collation centres in many locations without the intervention of law-enforcement agents.

“There were also several cases of malfunctioning of card readers, which disenfranchised duly registered , in addition to many cases of unregistered voting pre-purchased ’ cards not collected by their actual owners.

“These malpractices could easily form the basis to challenge the election results. We have, however, decided not to commence an election petition.

“This is to avoid further tension in the state.

“We are also mindful that the leadership of our great party, APC and many well-placed individuals have made pronouncements endorsing the process, which we have chosen to respect,’’ Ize-Iyamu said.

He said that they have consequently, decided to continue the pre-election cases in full exercise of “our legal , just as our opponents have considered it their prerogative to also continue with their pre-election cases against us’’.

Ize-Iyamu thanked President for his statesmanship and support throughout the election .

He also commended the Oba of Benin, Ewuare 11, and religious leaders for their fervent prayers before, during and after the election and APC supporters including Edo people for their belief in his candidature.

“Let me conclude by noting that our cause to uplift our state using the democratic system is a noble mission from which we SHALL NEVER waiver.

(NAN)