On July 14th, Edo State will again attract global attention as opposing political parties including the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP), the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and others will attempt to unseat the incumbent, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole of the ruling Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). PATRICK OCHOGA takes a look at the contending issues that may decide the winner and loser.
The stakes in Edo State, the heartbeat of the nation, to occupy Dennis Osadebay’s avenue, the seat of power in the next week governorship election is high as the two major contenders for the number one office in the state are leaving no stone unturned as politicking has become the order of the day since the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) blew the whistle to the commencement of campaigns.
The heat generated between the once dominant ruling party, PDP and the ACN, which has held sway in the last three and a half years, is leaving nobody in doubt that July14th election will be one that will go down in the political history of Edo State and indeed Nigeria considering more especially the political gladiators on the sides of the parties jostling for the soul of the state.
Since last year, as a build up towards what to expect, the media have been awash of high profile carpet-crossing of politi¬cians wishing to be part of Governor Adams Oshiomhole‘s success story in Edo on one the hand, and those that want to be part of history for returning the state back to the PDP that once ruled the state.
Analysts have posited that those who form the bulk of those that had pitched their tents with the ruling party are those who have created the crisis in the PDP.
For Edo State, the bitter rivalry between the ACN and PDP, the two major parties in the state, is worse than that of any other state. In the last few months, a good num¬ber of reports from Edo State have centred on the bickering over power between the two parties, in most cases uncouth languages were em¬ployed to score cheap political points.
Even more disturbing is the orgy of violence which has trailed the build up to next week’s election which had raised serious security concern even though President Goodluck Jonathan’s last governorship rally had promised to provide 100% security during the election still leaves fear in the minds of electorates following desperation among the major players for power.
No doubt, since the birth of democracy in 1999, no election has heated up the political landscape than that of Edo State. The reasons are not farfetched from the fact that the PDP, which controlled the state for over a decade, lost bitterly to the ACN through a court of appeal judgment.
A victory which the PDP till date still laid claims to the fact that their party actually won the election but lost the judgment due to internal squabble then within ranks of the party.
The July 14th election, to many analysts, will put to