By Simeon OSAJIE
As the agitation for the senatorial district to produce the next Edo State governor in 2024 thickens, a chieftain of the Edo State chapter of the Labour Party (LP), Dr. Kingsley Oghogho Okundaye, has maintained that, the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is the only law that can determined who is qualified as the next governor of the state, not base on rotational formation which is an agreement by political parties.
The US based Edo Indigene Dr. Okundaye, posited that what we should be considering now for anybody that is aspiring to succeed Mr. Godwin Obaseki as the next Edo State governor is competence, capacity and the character of such personality.
He made the clarification at a media interactive session with some journalists in Benin City, Edo State capital.
According to Dr. Okundaye, “Labour Party is a party that abides by its Constitution. Except, I am wrong, but I have not seen any party that would fix or zone the rotation of office to one particular district. Baring in mind, that there are competence and qualified people spread across the three Senatorial Districts,except the person or group of persons are not doing so in good faith.
“If it must be a party that abides by its Constitution, then our discussion should not be revolving round rotational offices. We believed in competence and capacity. Again, these are the things that supposed to drive our politics. Our politics should do away with sectional interest.
“This has not done justice to governance, whether at the state or national levels. It has not taken us to anywhere in term of developments. My stand is that, if everyone is qualified according to the Constitution, let the person contest. So, anyone that is interested to run for governorship position should come out and contest and become part of the process.
“The discussion now is , what do you have that you are offering to Edo people? What is that thing that you want to do differently? I have always emphasized that governance should be about the people and any well-meaning governance and administrator or anybody who is involve in governance must be somebody who identify with the dreams and aspirations of the people.
“That should be the first conversation now, and the second most important conversation I heard you say is that, is the party ready for the election? Is not enough for somebody to say, I will do this and that. Is the party really ready? What should we do to make the party ready? What are the things that should be done differently to prevent what occurred at the recent elections?
“These are all of the discussion that we suppose to discuss as a party. These are the discussion that the leadership of the party should involve in at this point. I think the issue of rotational sharing of governorship seat had been over flogged and to me, it is an issue of insignificant,” he added.
Going further, the Edo Labour Party Dr Okundaye added:”If you ask me whether Labour Party will participate in the forthcoming local government elections in the state, I will say yes, Labour Party will fully participate. Luckily, Comrade Onaghese Ero Daniel – has emerged as our candidate to run for chairmanship position of Oredo local government council that has put to rest that Labour Party is fully prepared to contest for the local government election across the eighteen local government area of the state.
Comrade Onaghese Ero Daniel is a vibrant young man and with the way and manner he emerged the winner to contest for the position was very encouraging. And he can also share his story to friends to compete.
“But all that we in the Labour Party are asking for is due process that would allow free, fair and credible election. If the process is fair given what labour party stands for and the success we have been able to record in the previous elections regardless of the outcome of the elections, we are confidence that our party will emerged winner in Oredo local government council and many other local government councils in the State.
“We have carefully conducted our counsellorship and chairmanship primary across the eighteen local government of the state, and the primary elections had been ractified this month. Our hope and worry now is for the process to be free and fair. That is what we stand for. Again, traditionally we have seen a situation whereby the ruling party emerged winner in all the local government areas of the state.
“But, we are not disturbed by that, we are relying on the ‘organic based mechanism,’ which we have as a party. It is no longer news that the Labour Party is well liked and loved by the strength of the youths, that makes the youths to cause great change in our party today which gives us the advantage and put us ahead among other parties. So, in that line, we have great confidence that our candidates will emerge winner in the next local government elections in Edo State,” he added.