Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has alleged that the All Progressives Congress (APC), his former party, are importing thugs into the state to cause mayhem ahead of the primary and September 19 gubernatorial election.
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He said this in a statement issued by Crusoe Osagie, his Special Adviser on Media and Communication Strategy, on Sunday.
Obaseki, who recently joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said the APC is the only party yet to notify the government of its readiness to comply with the state COVID-19 guidelines.
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“The Edo State Government is calling on all political parties holding primary elections to restrict themselves to conducting their activities within the protocols and regulations provided for in the Edo State Coronavirus Quarantine Regulations and the Government’s Gazette on political gatherings during this pandemic.
“These guidelines were issued in fulfillment of government’s statutory duty to ensure the protection of lives and property in the state, in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.
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“However, we note with concern that all the political parties conducting primary elections in Edo State have notified the government of their readiness to comply with the extant laws and COVID-19 regulations, except the All Progressives Congress.
“The APC appears resolved to carry on with the conduct of their primary election in violation of the Edo State COVID-19 Quarantine Regulations and the state Government’s Gazette on political gatherings in a pandemic.”
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“We also have it on good authority that these persons have imported thugs into the state to actualise this illegality, further threatening the peace and security of our dear state.
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“In the light of this, we want to state unequivocally that the Edo State Government will spare no expense in upholding the law and protecting the lives of our people. We will ensure we identify and prosecute anyone who engages in this illegality and their collaborators, should they proceed with this unlawful conduct,” the statement read.