Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has emerged winner of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Edo governorship direct primary conducted on Monday in Benin City.
Chairman of the Edo State APC Primary Election Committee, Governor Hope Uzodinma, declared Ize-Iyamu winner after collating the results turned in by the returning officers in the 18 local government areas of the state.
He polled 27,838 votes, while his closest rival, Dr Pius Odubu scored 3,776, while Mr Osaro Obaze got 2,751 votes.
Ize-Iyamu, the candidate backed by former governor Adams Oshiomhole, will now fly the party’s flag at the September 19 governorship election in the state.
Ize-Iyamu, who was candidate of the PDP in the 2016 governorship election, defected to the APC following the misunderstanding between Governor Godwin Obaseki and Oshiomhole, suspended national chairman of the APC.
After clinching the APC ticket, Ize-Iyamu said he is willing to work with Obaseki if he would return to the party he “originally belong” to.
He said, “By this process we just competed, the party is now on its step to full recovery. I also salute Governor Obaseki, and I will appeal to him to return to the party.
“In every party we have disagreement but I don’t want it that it is this disagreement that would push him out. I once made that mistake. It might be nice for him to come back, and certainly I’m going to work with with him.
“We’ve shown the example today in APC as we are determined to be law abiding. The few months we have for campaign, let’s do it in a law abiding manner. I’m pledgeing on behalf of my party that we will be peacul and respectful.
“I’m naturally happy and humbled by the overwhelming support from the 18 local government areas. I’m so related that there was no incident of violence as this has been my prayer point. The election went on with strict adherence to the state’s government COVID-19 regulations.”