Fresh facts have emerged on the real reasons behind the desperation of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC in seeking for postponement of the Edo State gubernatorial election.
Reports on Thursday, September 8, 2016 indicate that following the request by the Department of State Services (DSS) and Nigerian Police for the postponement of the September 10, 2016 gubernatorial elections in Edo State, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had proceeded to a crucial meeting to weigh the possibility of a postponement.
But an informed source and top chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State told SIGNAL on Thursday that the real reason behind the ‘gymnastics of postponement’ was the palpable fear within the ranks of the APC that the PDP was coasting home to victory in Edo State.
According to the source who also holds a key position in the government of Governor Adams Oshiomole, three independent polls conducted in Edo State within the past four weeks show the PDP clearly leading and poised to clinch the state.
The implication of a PDP win in Edo State, the national leadership of the APC was said to have advised Buhari would mark a dangerous signal for not just the APC as a party but inflict a further dent on the already waning popularity of the Buhari administration.
Another implication the source disclosed, was the lifetime embarrassment a PDP victory will cause Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, the national chairman of the APC who hails from Edo State and is a former governor of the state.
“Three polls conducted in Edo State showed that there is no way we are going to win the election if the election is conducted this weekend. So we need to buy time. The idea of postponement is to enable us see what we can do within the available time. But the truth is, our popularity in Edo State has declined under the current government. If you mention APC or change today in Edo State you can be stoned. According to the polls conducted, the only place where we have a slight lead in the state is in Edo North. Both South and Central is looking very bad. So our leaders met with the national leadership. Of course you know the national chairman is from our state. So after the meeting they made a case to the President”, the source said.
There were conflicting reports on Thursday that INEC had agreed to postpone the election by two weeks. While Leadership reports that the election has been postponed by two weeks, Premium Times says INEC has resolved to proceed as planned. At the time of filing this report, Punch reports that INEC has agreed to postpone the election by two weeks.
Many Nigerians have criticized the move to postpone the elections under the guise of a ‘flimsy security’ report coming just days after President Buhari led a team of APC stalwarts to the state to campaign heavily for their candidate Godwin Obaseki.