Edo indigenes in the Diaspora and Members of Benin Club of Massachusetts, United States of America (USA), yesterday, condemned assault on Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governors and some members at the Palace of the Oba of Benin, Ewuare ll.
In a letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, they expressed concern that the political situation in the state had been “grossly mismanaged and eventually got out of control following the flag off of gubernatorial campaigns.”
President of Benin Club of Massachusetts, Templo Omoroghomwan, described the assault as the handiwork of unethical and self-seeking politicians intended to destabilise Edo State.
He added that members of the club were calling for a violence-free election in Edo, and decried the unhealthy political development instigated by a few self-seeking politicians in the state.
“In solidarity, we members of the Benin Club of Massachusetts and our supporters join the Benin Monarch to condemn the political scheming of godfatherism in Edo.
“The attack at the Oba’s palace is an assault on the collective intelligence of Edo people to deny Governor Godwin Obaseki a second term, especially when he is progressive and performing,” Omoroghomwan said.
Besides, the All Progressives Congress (APC) had accused a governor of the South-South region of planning to hire thugs from neighbouring states to rig the September 19 governorship election.
APC spokesperson, Yekini Nabena, therefore, charged security agents to remain vigilant and ensure that Edo people’s votes count on elections day.
He described PDP Governors’ Forum’s call on President Muhammadu Buhari, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies to be impartial in the Edo and Ondo states governorship polls as “deceptive.”
Meanwhile, YIAGA Africa solicited support from journalists in sensitising and enlightening members of the public on the need for a violence-free election in the Edo State governorship election.
Its Director of Programmes, Cynthia Mbamalu, who made the call at a media roundtable with journalists in Benin City, said media partnership would provide accurate information to the electorate in a bid to achieve credible election in the state.
Mbamalu disclosed that the election observer group would use Watching The Vote (WTV) observation method to promote electoral policies, credible polls and civic participation.
On his part, Programme Manager, Elections, Paul James, said its WTV Parallel Vote Tabulation (PVT) would present an accurate assessment of the election processes, such as compliance to guidelines for the conduct of elections and transparency of the counting process.
Chairman of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Edo State chapter, Roland Osakue, pledged to collaborate with YIAGA Africa, in curbing election violence and encouraging citizens to protect their votes.