A governorship aspirant of the All-Progressive’s Congress in Edo State, Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has said that he is confident that he will win overwhelmingly in the upcoming Edo State gubernatorial election.
In an interview with ARISE NEWS on Thursday, the APC governorship aspirant said that he has an edge in the forthcoming elections as he claimed that the current governor of Edo State, Godwin Obaseki, has not, in the past eight years of his tenure as governor, developed the state.
Ize-Iyamu said that in this election, there are more people than usual who were interested in running for the post of governor. He explained the reason saying, “The general belief is that the governor has not done well, and that people need change. Everybody wants to offer himself for that position. And then, every area of the state also feels marginalised, they feel that nothing has happened. And so, their people have beckoned to them to say look, it appears as if until we have a governor, nothing will happen in terms of development, so let’s also sponsor our own. So, there’s a big cry all over the place for their sons to become governors, so, that is why the field is so crowded.”
Expressing his certainty to win the APC’s governorship ticket, he said, “I am confident that I will get the ticket because in terms of name recognition, in terms of antecedence, in terms of trust and in terms of who our people are yearning for right now, I think to a large extent that that will stand me out. I’ve gone round the 18 local governments of the state, and I can tell you that the reception I received in each local government, no other aspirant has been able to match that.”
Ize-Iyamu further said, “The two strongest parties in the state, at one time or the other, have given me their platform. That will tell you the kind of person that they think I am. Twice, the two biggest parties have said, Pastor, be our flag bearer. I am not somebody that anybody can shove aside, I am somebody that is deeply rooted in the minds of our people. They know me, they trust me, they see me as a homeboy, they see me as somebody that has a clear-cut agenda about how to solve the problems of the state.
“So, the non-performance of the present governor gives me an edge. If the governor had done so well and he was also bringing somebody that was very well known, well, we will say that well, considering how well he has performed and who he is bringing, it’s going to be difficult to challenge him. But he also knows too that the PDP, I’m sorry to say, is a divided house. He’s fighting with his deputy, he’s fighting with the legacy party, and he’s trying to introduce somebody that they don’t know to be the flag bearer of the party.
“So, quite honestly, I believe that this third time, I will win and win overwhelmingly.”
Ize-Iyamu then said he had the best interests of Edo people at heart as he said, “Edo people, after going through all these, especially the last eight years, are yearning for somebody that they know. They don’t want to experiment again with who leads them. They are more than convinced that the past eight years have been a mistake, and the only way to correct it is to get somebody that they know, they trust, somebody who has put forward an agenda of what he wants to do, not somebody who just speaks and there is nothing to show about what he wants to do.”
The aspirant then addressed the rumours that he has been disqualified from running from the APC ticket saying, “I am a serious-minded person, and certainly, I will not contest an election where I have been disqualified. There is no truth to the rumours making the rounds that some of us were disqualified, we’ve not reached that stage. I’m surprised that the rumour persists despite the fact that the National Working Committee of our party, which is the highest organ, and even our state chapter has laid the matter to rest.”