AGENE GODWIN, Benin
Governor Godwin Nogheghase Obaseki of Edo State has expressed gratitude to the people of his state for his recent victory over the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu at the Edo Election Petition Tribunal, which sat at the Edo State High Court in Benin City, the State capital.
While the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had declared Godwin Obaseki the winner of the September 28, 2016 gubernatorial elections in Edo State, the PDP and Ize-Iyamu had written a petition challenging the result of the election and praying to be declared winner.
The Tribunal, which sat to hear the petition however concluded proceedings on Friday, upholding the declaration of Governor Obaseki as winner of the elections.
In a statement from the office of the governor, Obaseki said: “This victory at the tribunal would have been impossible without the support of the multitude of well wishers, soldiers and champions of democracy, who stood firmly with me and the good people of our state as we fought in defence of a mandate freely given, which we consider to be divine”.
In addition, the governor appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari for what he described as “his fatherly counsel and unwavering commitment to democracy and good governance” and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo for “his wisdom, encouragement, and relentless support”.
Continuing, Governor Obaseki also praised Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, National Chairman of APC for remaining a strong pillar and the judiciary for being an impartial arbiter and helping to defend democracy.
Meanwhile, he acknowledged the impact of the media, saluting them for stirring rigorous debate, even as he lauded the support of the party faithful and the security forces who helped to maintain law and order.
Also on the governor’s list of appreciation was his predecessor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, who he said helped to liberate the state from the home of political irresponsibility, praying that history would be kind to the former governor.
He, however, urged opposition parties to join him in building a progressive and prosperous state, noting that although their opposition helped his administration stay focused, he would refrain from gloating in victory and that the season of contestation was over.
He said: “To all my dear citizens of Edo State at home and abroad, let me state again that our victory at the tribunal is a challenge to work hard on our promise to move Edo forward. Finally, all appreciation and honour goes to God Almighty for being our guide and guard. May His blessings be upon us all”