Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo has resigned his membership of All Progressives Congress (APC), saying he will soon announce his next line of action.
Obaseki, who made his position known to State House correspondents after visiting the Presidential Villa, on Tuesday said his resignation from the ruling party followed his disqualification from the June 22 APC primaries.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Obaseki was disqualified by the APC’s screening committee over alleged discrepancies in his personal and academic records.
The National Working Committee (NWC) of APC also endorsed the disqualification of Obaseki as a candidate for the party’s governorship primaries.
The NWC of APC, led by its National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, had on June 15 met behind closed doors with the Chief of Staff to the president, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, at the State House, Abuja.
Obaseki had in a statement vowed not to challenge his disqualification by the party, allegedly accusing Oshiomhole as the brain behind the disqualification while Oshiomhole said the party was going ahead with its primaries on June 22.
Oshiomhole, after the meeting with Gambari on Monday, said: “We’ve gone a long way: we’ve advertised the timetable, there was the stage of collection of forms and about six people collected forms. In that time table we also provided for screening and we also provided for appeals arising from the screening.
“This is standard practice that the NWC has adopted since 2015 and in the case of Edo, we have completed the process of selling forms; we have also completed the process of screening; we have completed the process of appeals arising from the screening by those who wish to take advantage.
“The NWC has met and has reviewed the report of the screening committee and we were unanimous that the screening was thoroughly done and found that three people were eligible to contest, with regards to the provisions of our Constitution.’’
Obaseki, however, said: “You would recall that my statement in my last tweet I said that I will make a decision after my disqualification was announced by APC that I will make a decision after I have consulted with the leadership and my supporters in Edo state and also having informed the president.
“So, just here today to inform you that I have now decided formally to resign my membership of All Progressives Congress.
“Having done that I would now announce in the next few days my specific line of action and what platform I will be contesting the gubernatorial elections on,’’
The governor, who dismissed all allegations against him by the party’s screening committee, described his disqualification as unfortunate.
On why announcing his resignation while on visit to the State House, the governor said:
“I have said that before I make a decision, I have to show respect to my President, who I adore, who for me is an epitome of incorruptibility, an epitome of order, an epitome of lawfulness.
“This is the man whom for him that is what Nigeria should be all about. I think I owe him that respect to come and tell him what I have done and why I have decided to take the decision I took.’’