…dismisses Prof. Ihonvbere Panel Report


From Tony Osauzo, Benin City

A frontline All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirant, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, yesterday, described the viral report of his exclusion and others from the Edo State governorship race by the Prof. Julius Ihonvbere-led screening panel as ‘mere rumour’, declaring that he remains the candidate to beat in the forthcoming primaries and that he would contest and win the gubernatorial election .

Recall that the Prof. Julius Ihonvbere screening committee had cleared only six aspirants and dropped 23 others with a proviso that they are however free to purchase the governorship nomination forms.

Ize-Iyamu who addressed a mammoth crowd of his supporters and leaders of the APC at the the Benin airport on hisarrivalfromAbuja, dismissed the report of the panel, saying that the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party, has given clear directives that all aspirants for the governorship race are free to purchase nomination forms.

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He also described his relationship with Senator Adams Oshiomhole as cordial and a senior brother who he holds in high esteem.

“I want to assure you that am in the race and by next week by the grace of God, I will collect the form. Any Edo person is worthy of the ticket and am not a stranger. I want to assure you that your support will not be in vain and there is nothing to worry about.

“When you are contesting for an election there are bound to be intrigues and all kinds of rumours and stories. The highest organ of our party issued a statement by the Publicity Secretary and particularly to Edo Governorship election and specifically said that all those who have aspiration to run for governorship should go and collect the forms.

“And that there are the only one to set up a screening committee which they will do at the appropriate time and if you look at the earlier time table released you will find the schedule there. Let me announce that by next week I will collect the form.

“I know there were rumour that some people have been excluded but by that NWC release that is not possible anymore. The only people that can exclude aspirants is the committee set up by the NWC. I want to assure you that I will contest and win the election.

Commenting on his relationship with the National leader of the party and former governor of the state, Sen. Adams Oshiomhole, Ize-Iyamu said: “My relationship is cordial. He is my senior brother and I respect age. We have worked together for many years. He is the leader of our party and a distinguished senator”.