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One of the aspirant seeking the governorship ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) ahead of the Edo state election, Pastor Ozagie Ize-Iyamu, has said everything he said about the party and it’s national chairman Adams Oshiomhole in 2016 were mere campaign talks that should not be taken serious.
This was as some aspirants including a former deputy governor of the state, Dr Pius Odubu stepped down for him.
Among those who stepped down for him are Chief Solomon Edebiri, Prof. Ebegue Amadasun, Gen Charles Airhiavbere, Engr Chris Ogiemwonyi, Hon. Ehiozuwa Agbonayinma, Hon Saturday Uwuilekhue and Mr Blessing Agbonmhere.
Pastor Iyamu who was the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate in 2016 said he used abusive words on APC and Oshiomhole because he was in opposing side.
Speaking after picking his nomination and expression of interest forms to contest the APC primary, Wednesday in Abuja, Pastor Iyamu said during campaigns there are so many things politicians say but after the campaign they close rank.
When our correspondent asked Pastor Iyamu to justify all what he said about the APC and Oshiomohle in 2016, he said: “I am sure even with your wife you quarrel. If you were to play back all the conversations you will see that in the heat of anger, I am sure you will not be in the same house.
“In life you will quarrel, you will disagree, you agree, you move on. A times when you disagree that can make you exchange words but that is normal. Of course elections and campaigns, you don’t expect the man in APC to complement me when I am in PDP and you don’t expect me vying for office in PDP to complement the person in APC. It is normal. It is not something anybody can take home about. During campaigns there are so many things that we say and after campaigns we close ranks.”
Speaking on whether the party should use direct or indirect primary, Pastor Iyamu said he will be available for any of the mode adopted.
“If they want us to do indirect so be it, if they want us to do direct so be it. If you want to use the Covid-19 situation what should be recommended really is direct because the direct decentralizes the system. Meanwhile indirect will congregate people in one place in thousands to come and vote.”
He said the aspirants and members of the APC Caucus in the House of Representatives led by the House Deputy Leader, Comrade Peter Akpatason contributed the N22.5 million fees to purchase the forms for him.
While he conceded that the governor has a right to seek a second term, such ambition is negotiable, as other APC members have a right to seek to displace him.
Ize-Iyamu said he has done his best trying to counsel the governor and that the time has come to reposition the state.
He said; “We mean well for our state. We are not looking for positions simply because we need to look for something to occupy us. Even though what we have now is an APC Administration, we are not too happy with the pace of development. We are not happy with the rancour. We are not happy with the divisions. We are not happy with the insecurity and that cannot augur well for development. That was why we said our party cannot be changed, that it is better to change the incumbent and ensure that our party remains in office.
Meanwhile a chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo state, Blessing Agbonmhere, has revealed that God told him that Pastor Ozagie Ize-Iyamu will emerge the next governor of Edo state.
Agbonmhere also revealed reasons why his group supported Iyamu as a consensus aspirant.
Speaking with newsmen after Pastor Iyamu picked his nomination form to contest the ticket of APC ahead the governorship election in Edo state, Agbonmhere discribed Pastor Ize-Iyamu as a leader of Edo people worldwide who has been part of development of the state even before now.
“Pastor Ize-Iyamu is a born leader who can unite all factions of APC on the state and I can tell you that the deputy governor, Phillip Shuaibu that people are talking about today will gladly work with Ize-Iyamu as governor.
“Why I know that Ize-Iyamu will get the ticket is that apart from the fact that I got the revelations from God, I also know the Governor Godwin Obaseki has insulted all the leaders of APC in Edo state, he has called them names. So the leaders are not happy with the governors and they are ready to work for the emergence of Pastor Ize-Iyamu as governor, who they believe is a mature leader and has capacity to unite the state for development.”
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