The Edo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has called on the United States and other European nation missions in Nigeria to show huge interest in the Edo State governorship election fixed for September 10 – in order to ensure free and fair election.
The PDP candidate, in a Press statement issued and signed by the Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu Campaign Organization Media Unit, stated this when he received Mr. John Bray and Mr. James Plasman, the Consul-General and the Economic Officer of the Consulate General of the United Stated of America respectively, in his residence in Benin-City.
“I want to appeal to you to collaborate with your colleagues in the European nations to monitor the coming election in Edo State and also put pressure on the security agencies and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure that we have free, fair and acceptable election that will be devoid of violence’’, Ize-Iyamu stated.
“By our nature, Edo people are not violent people. But we are aware that Governor Adams Oshiomhole is doing everything to compromise some senior INEC officials and security agencies in the state. And I know our people will resist any plan to rig the election, and it will not be good for our democratic process.”
Ize-Iyamu lamented the level of decay in the state infrastructure and the lack of vision exhibited by the state government towards development. He later presented his manifesto, titled ‘’SIMPLE Agenda’’ to the US officials, promised to work closely with the US mission in Nigeria in areas of infrastructure and industrial development if elected.
Earlier while responding, the US Consul-General, Mr. Bray, said they will be back in Benin-City in September to monitor the election and promised to work with INEC, security agencies and non-governmental organisations on how to ensure a free and fair election in the state.
Apart from coming to Benin-city to have conversation with all stakeholders in the September 10 election, Mr. Bray added that they were also in the state to celebrate the opening of the first phase of the Azura Power Plant.
According to him, “We are here to celebrate the opening of the first phase of Azura Power Plant, which is a deliverable from President Obama’s power Africa initiative in 2013.
“We are also here to talk to the candidates regarding the upcoming election, and we are hoping that the election will be free, transparent and non-violent. And we will be talking about that. We will be back in September.’’
Ize-Iyamu’s appeal to US came as Governor Oshiomhole was said to have held a two-hour secret meeting with the Inspector-General of Police in Abuja on Tuesday, and at a time INEC said that its major concern in the preparation for the conduct of the election was the security of election personnel, voters and materials.