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Edo deputy governor denounces PDP leaders’ endorsement, deems meeting null and void

Philip Shaibu challenges PDP endorsement, labels gathering without his participation as invalid, asserting his leadership in Edo North

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The Deputy Governor of Edo State, Philip Shaibu, has contested the legitimacy of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leaders’ meeting held in Edo North on Monday. The gathering, which endorsed former Sterling Bank chairman Asue Ighodalo as the preferred PDP gubernatorial candidate, has drawn criticism from Shaibu, who considers the meeting a slight on his office.

Shaibu, addressing supporters in Jattu, Etsako West Local Government, expressed dissatisfaction with not being informed or invited to the endorsement meeting orchestrated by Chief Mike Oghiadomhe. Oghiadomhe, a former deputy governor of the state, convened the assembly in Fuga, Etsako Central local government, with influential party figures in attendance.

The Deputy Governor asserted, “Any meeting held in the senatorial zone without my knowledge is deemed null and void.” He emphasized his role as the PDP leader in Edo North and Deputy Leader of the Party in the state, dismissing the decision made in his absence.

Despite Shaibu’s objections, the endorsed aspirant, Asue Ighodalo, took steps towards party unification. Ighodalo held a unification meeting with members of the State Working Committee of the PDP at the residence of Edo State PDP Chairman, Dr. Tony Aziegbemi. The gathering marked the convergence of previously aggrieved committee members, signaling a commitment to unity ahead of the 2024 governorship election.

Ighodalo, during the meeting, conveyed his intention to run for the governorship, stating, “My task, since I stepped into the frame, was to unify the party at every level in Edo State.” The aspirant’s effort to bring harmony to the PDP was commended by Dr. Aziegbemi, the Edo State PDP Chairman.

Shaibu, undeterred by the endorsement setback, expressed confidence in his leadership capabilities, pledging to make Edo State the best economy in the country if given the opportunity. He acknowledged Governor Godwin Obaseki’s achievements and emphasized the need for an inclusive economy that meets the direct needs of the people.

As the political landscape in Edo State undergoes shifts and challenges within the PDP, the statements and actions of key figures reflect the complex dynamics leading up to the gubernatorial election in September.

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