By SIMON EBEGBULEM
AS celebration over the Supreme Court victory of Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State continued in Benin City yesterday, some stakeholders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) want the leadership of the party in the state to sanction the governorship candidate of the party, Gen.Charles Airhiavbere, for alleged disobedience to the PDP decision not to contest the result of last year’s election in Edo State.
The PDP in the state had withdrawn its petition against Oshiomhole but Airhiavbere refused to heed to the directive of party and decided to contest the result of the election alone before the election petition tribunal.
But his seeming doggedness was punctured on Friday after the Supreme Court declared that the issue of Oshiomhole’s educational qualification was a pre-election matter, and therefore upturned the ruling of the Appeal Court in Benin, which directed the lower tribunal to hear the matter.
Following what the PDP stakeholders described as the embarrassment caused to the party by Airiavbere, they called for his immediate expulsion from the party.
A statement by their spokesman, Chief Aisulimhen Ighodaro, stressed the need to commence total overhaul of the party in Edo “by starting from disciplining Airhiavbere who disobeyed the position of our great party”.
According to the statement, “the ill-advised decision of our candidate in the July 14 election, Maj-Gen Charles Airhiavbere, to go to court against the party advice has done untold damage to our reputation as a party.
“His unilateral decision, which was at variance with that of the party at the national and the state levels, is not only curious, but also shows that Airhiavbere is not a party man, he holds the PDP in contempt and is on a personal voyage to fulfill his inordinate ambition.
“The decision by his running mate, Hon Johnson Abolagba, is not only commendable, it also shows that he is a proper, well-tutored and real politician who regards the party as supreme. We call for a committee to be set up so as to begin the process of expelling him from the party so that we can move on as a party”.