Political turmoil erupts as former Edo deputy Gov. backs APC candidate

By Innocent Raphael

The former Deputy Governor of Edo State, Philip Shaibu, has sparked a political storm by openly endorsing Senator Monday Okpebholo, the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, for the upcoming September 21 governorship election.

This move has intensified the rivalry between the APC and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Shaibu declared his support during a Father’s Day event at St. Paul’s Catholic Church in Benin City. He criticized Asue Ighodalo, the PDP candidate, labeling him as a “Lagos-based lawyer” and a product of “godfatherism.”

He further expressed confidence in Okpebholo, whom he described as a “homeboy” with the potential to lead Edo State forward after Governor Godwin Obaseki’s term ends on November 12.

Shaibu also acknowledged Olumide Akpata of the Labour Party (LP) as another qualified “homeboy” among the 16 candidates, emphasizing that both Okpebholo and Akpata possess the integrity needed for Edo’s progress.

In response, the PDP has called for Shaibu’s resignation. Rev Olu Martins, Director General of the Asue/Ogie Campaign Management Council, criticized Shaibu’s statements and urged him to leave the party honorably.

Martins defended Governor Obaseki, refuting claims of dictatorship and godfatherism, and questioned the validity of Shaibu’s “homeboy” argument.

The APC welcomed Shaibu’s endorsement. Comrade Orobosa Omo-Ojo, Publicity Director for Okpebholo’s campaign, dismissed the PDP’s demand for Shaibu’s resignation as baseless.

Omo-Ojo further alleged misuse of state resources by Governor Obaseki to support the Labour Party and called for an investigation into the administration’s handling of the state’s educational programs.

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