BY GRACE ANYANWU, ABUJA – The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Sunday declared that the victory of Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State as won by the people, is historic and serves as a strong, viable and unambiguous lesson to leaders.

The PDP pointedly told “political godfathers”, that the Edo election must serve as a loud lesson that power belongs only to God, which He confers through the people; and that no matter how an individual strives to lord it over others, the will of God, through the people, will always prevail.

It boosted that Ondo State is next on the line to be won.

The party while congratulating the people of Edo state on the re-election of their choice leader, Obaseki, celebrated the resilience and courage exhibited by the people of Edo state in resisting the antics of the enemies of democracy, who, as vote buyers, patrons of lions and tigers, as well as beguilers, attempted to take over the political space of Edo state.

A statement by the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan, rejoiced with the Edo people for helping to reset the political culture of the nation by casting their votes, protecting the votes, ensuring that their votes counted and following it, “bumper-to-bumper”, to the final point of declaration.

The party also commended traditional institutions, faith-based organizations, youth groups, market women, artisans, community associations, trade unions, traditional leaders and other stakeholders in Edo state for standing up for their state during her critical moments.

It said that on account of the reverberation of this victory across the length and breath of the country, it implored President Muhammadu Buhari to continue in this new found spirit of ensuring that the people are allowed to freely choose their leaders at all elections.

The PDP further said; “Our party states this in our belief that in spite of his administration’s failure in other spheres of life as well as in previous elections, if Mr. President can continue to toe this new line of allowing for electoral uprightness, history will be beckoned to be kind to him.

“Our party also notes the efforts of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) under Prof. Yakubu Mahmood in ensuring that Edo election was conducted in a manner that was largely adjudged to be free, fair, transparent and credible. Nigerians hope that what we have witnessed in Edo state will not be an off-season procedure in the commission. We demand that this credible process applies to all our elections”.

The PDP also applauded the use of virtual portal by INEC to upload results directly from the polling unit, the base of the election, which the party noted, made it impossible for electoral violators to hijack this electoral process.

It expressed hope that this new found image of INEC will gather more thresholds in future elections, particularly the October 10, 2020 Ondo governorship election.

The PDP however called on INEC to strengthen its processes, particularly in the area of card readers, to forestall the type of delays witnessed in accreditation of voters.

It however noted the improvement in the activities of security agencies compared to past elections and therefore expressed the hope that the nation’s security organs will continue in this stead in future elections.

It said that the Edo election has indeed shown that credible elections are possible in the country if Nigerians play by the rules.

Furthermore, the PDP applauds the international community for their keen observation of our electoral processes as well as profiling of those who are bent on undermining our democracy and making free and fair elections appear impossible in Nigeria.

It urged the international community and all lovers of democracy not to relent in providing necessary advisory to our leaders on the conduct of our elections.

The PDP restated its support for the actions taken so far by the US and UK in restricting electoral violators from visiting their countries and we urge them not to restrain on further sanctions against such individuals for their sinister roles in the nation’s elections.

The PDP appreciated the Chairman of its National Campaign Council, Governor Nyesom Wike, for providing the right leadership that led to the victory in Edo state and also commended the Chairman of PDP Governors Forum, Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, the Chairman of the South South PDP Governors Forum, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa as well as all of its governors, National Assembly caucus, elders, leaders, critical stakeholders and teeming members of the party for their efforts in the election.

It also appreciated the candidate of the APC, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu whose participation in this election helped to deepen the nation’s democracy and enabled the people to make their choice.

It further said; “We invite him, in the spirit of sportsmanship, to congratulate his brother, Governor Godwin Obaseki and join him in the onerous task of leadership in the general interest of all Edo people.

“Furthermore, our party thanks the media, the civil society groups and all Nigerians across board, for showing more than a passing interest in ensuring that the wish of the people of Edo State for a credible and transparent election prevailed. We do not take your efforts in this regard for granted.

The PDP assured of a continuous partnership with all critical stakeholders in its collective desire to recreate a nation that will continue to be Nigerians’ pride.

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