Edo guber: Shuaibu storms National Secretariat, demands certificate of return - NEWS FRONTIER DAILY


Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Edo guber: Shuaibu storms National Secretariat, demands certificate of return

A fresh crisis is brewing in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), over the just concluded Edo State Governorship election following the insistence of the State Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu, that he won the primary and should be given a Certificate of Return. 

Shaibu, who emerged as winner of a parallel primary, stormed the National Secretariat of the PDP yesterday, to demand that he be issued a certificate of return. 

His demand came barely 24 hours after the party’s Acting National Chairman, Amb. Umar Damagum and the party leadership issued a certificate of return to Dr. Asue Ighodalo, who won the primary recognized by the party. 

The Deputy Governor who was at the Secretariat with a handful of his aides, did not meet any member of the National Working Committee on seat.

He, however, insisted that the party must abide by its own rules or be prepared to face legal action. 

Speaking to reporters shortly after exiting the office of the Acting National Chairman of the party, Shaibu said, “Today is 28th of February, 2024 by the PDP guidelines approved by the NWC on the Edo 2024 governorship primary.

“Today is the day set aside by the electoral guidelines to be the day that the certificate of returns will be issued, so it is not surprising that I am here today.

“ I am here to receive my certificate of return because I won the primary in Edo conducted and the authentic delegates voted. 

“If you look at the board of the party office here, you will see the name of all the delegates that voted for me. 

“Today is presentation of Certificate of Return according to the party, so PDP must follow its rules and guidelines, this is what we are talking about. 

“The process of producing a candidate has been compromised from the onset and we ask that those things be corrected. Even the committee that recommended political solution is fully aware that there were abnormalities in the process that led to my emergence and whoever.

“But why I am here is to obey the guidelines to come and receive the certificate of return and I was told that somebody else came here yesterday and was given the certificate. 

“I think the court will tell among us who is the real candidate, but I am here in fulfillment of the electoral guidelines of the PDP to receive my certificate.”

He further said, “I have a document here where those that conducted the primary submitted to the office of the National Organising Secretary, from this document you will see the mess that took place in Edo state. This primary cannot be put aside.

“ I am ready for us to correct the abnormalities in internal party democracy, because that is the beginning of he substance of Democracy, if the party does not get it right , the foundation of our democracy is already been threatened and we wil not fold our hands to watch what we laboured for, fought for, some people died in the process.  

“Those that conducted the primaries and wrote this report are being threatened, they tried to procure them and many of them refused, now they are being threatened to write another report. 

“This is a committee that was put together by the NWC. If the PDP is serious, ready to win Edo state, they must do what is right and I am telling our members in Edo, not to be worried we will get to the promise land. 

“Edo will be the place where we will reset how internal democracy can be strengthened so that the foundation of democracy is not destroyed. 

“I told them that I was coming, but none of them has come to work, only the staff of the secretariat are here, I don't know why they are not here that is strange and that is in line with why will they be in a hurry to give the certificate yesterday, when today was what was approved for the certificate to be given to the winner. I must be on the side of the people, straightening the foundation of our democracy which is party politics.”

In response to a question about whether he was ready to give peace a chance following calls by both the party leadership and its recognized candidate, Ighodalo for a truce, Shauibu expressed doubt over the sincerity of Governor Godwin Obaseki and his team. 

He said, “Maybe the acting Chairman may be very Honourable and means what he is saying , but another person talking about reconciliation don’t really mean what they are saying. 

“They are intimidating us, harassing us, as I speak, they are even threatening to impeach and that is their own way of dealing with people, they suspend , sack people, they make phone calls intimidating people telling people, they will come after you.

“During the military these are the kinds of threats that we were getting and we cannot return to the era of intimidation and harassment and that is the issue in Edo State.

“Some of us have the energy and the strength to fight against oppression and we have displayed it in many fora. that we hate oppression, we will always align with those that are civil, have empathy if you don't have these you don't have a place in democracy.”

Asked if he was considering seeking legal redress, Shaibu said,  “When the party‘s internal mechanism is followed and is obvious that the party is not ready to listen, the next line of action obviously will be the judiciary, but I pray we don't get there and that is why I came here today. 

“I’m sure in the coming days the acting National Chairman and others will adhere to what brought me here today and when they do so, there will not be need to go to court. 

“But if they don't do what is needful…needful in the sense that I won the primary with the authentic delegates, the certificate should be returned to me, if that is no done, we will not have any choice than to see interpretation by the court.”

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