By Simon Ebegbulem
BENIN—THE leadership of All Progressives Congress, APC, in Edo State has barred former chairmen, former councillors and other former officials in the administration of local government councils from contesting the March 3, 2018 council elections.
The decision of the party was made known to the leaders of the party in the 18 local government areas of the state, at a meeting presided over by the state chairman of the party, Anslem Ojezua. Former House of Representatives member, Patrick Obahiagbon, represented Governor Godwin Obaseki’s council, Oredo, at the meeting.
Ojezua, who addressed the party leaders, said the decision was reached after consultations with the state leader of the party and immediate past governor of the state, Adams Oshiomhole and Governor Obaseki.
According to him, “The leadership of the party took the decision in the best interest of the administration of local government councils in the state, sa we intend to ensure that the ongoing reforms at the council level, as regards revenue collection which the governor introduced to ensure that councils are self reliant and are able to pay their salaries, are not disrupted.”
Vanguard gathered that Governor Obaseki has been opposed to former council administrators coming back to head the councils due to what he described as the debt crisis into which they plunged the councils in the past.
However, the decision of the party has plunged many of the councils into confusion, particularly Egor Local Government Area, where about six former council administrators including three former chairman are in the race.
Vanguard observed that the leadership of the party led by the member representing Egor in the House of Assembly, Crosby Eribo embarked on marathon meetings yesterday with a view to finding a candidate that met the requirement.