Fresh crisis rocks Edo APC as Idahosa, Okpebholo declared winners of parallel guber primaries

The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State appears to be in crisis, as the party produced two winners in parallel governorship primaries on Saturday.

Imo Governor Hope Uzodimma named Dennis Idahosa, a House of Representatives member, the winner of the primary held at the Protea Hotel in Benin.

He stated that Idahosa, who represents the Ovia Federal Constituency, received 40,453 votes against Senator Monday Okpebholo’s 100 votes.

The declaration was affirmed by Mr Charity Amayaenvbo, the leader of the elected delegates, and seconded by Charles Oronsanye.

However, the opposite faction, which gathered at the Lushville Hotel and Suite GRA Benin, declared Okpebholo the winner. He represents Edo Central.

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The State Collation Officer, Dr Stanley Ugboajah, pronounced him the winner at Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s opulent mansion in Benin. Ize-Iyamu, the party’s 2020 governorship contender, withdrew from the contest on Friday.

Ugboajah reported that Okpebholo won with 12,145 votes, while Idahosa received 5,536 votes.

Trouble began about 2:52 p.m., when armed thugs stormed the Lushville Hotel and Suites, Gapiona Avenue, GRA, Benin, the initial collation center, disrupting the process.

They damaged property and injured journalists during the invasion, leaving security personnel at the venue helpless.

As at the time of the invasion, the collation officers were on break with Ughoajah, which caused some national television stations to cease live transmissions.

Okpekholo, as at the time of the invasion, was purportedly commanding Idahosa, aided by a former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Adams Oshiomhole, in eight of the 18 local government areas so far identified.

INEC officials were present at both collation centres.

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