Edo 2024: Declare me winner of LP primary, Imansuangbon tells party

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From Prince Owen Eresoyen, Benin

A governorship aspirant of Labour Party, LP, in Edo, Barr. Kenneth Imansuangbon, has asked leadership of the party to declare him winner of the party’s primary.

Barr. Olumide Akpata was declared winner of the LP’s primary.

Three other candidates also laying claims to the LP Governorship Tickets includes, Hilton Idahosa, Anderson Asemota and Monday Mawah.

But Barr. Imansuangbon popularly known as the “Rice Man” said the processes leading to the conduct of the ward congresses were corrupted by several irregularities despite assurances from the leadership of the party for a fair level playing field.

Imansuangbon, in a statement issued in Benin City, issued a one week ultimatum to the party’s leadership to reverse the decision of accepting Akpata as the party’s candidate.

He threatened to institute legal action against the party if the decision is not reversed.

Imansuagbon had previously failed to win party primaries in both the All Progressives Congress and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party.

In 2011, an intervention by late Chief Tony Anenih caused him victory at the PDP primary. In 2016, he contested under the APC and lost to Governor Godwin Obaseki. In 2020, he stepped down for Governor Obaseki to win the PDP primary.

Imansuangbon who condemned the processes of the LP primary said the APC and the PDP were very strategic by picking their candidates from Edo Central senatorial district and noted that if the LP was serious in winning the governorship election it would learnt from the strategic calculation of the other major parties.

He also said the processes were skewed by the National Chairman of the party, Julius Abure and the state Chairman Kelly Ogbaloi to favour Akpata.

The statement reads, “I want to first of all use this opportunity to thank my well wishes and staff of Pacesetters Schools for standing by me during my political sojourn. I also extend my thanks to Edo people and my supporters across the state.

“My interest in politics is to change the narratives of Edo and improve the lives of the people. I want an Edo where jobs would be available, where food will be cheap, where our teeming unemployed youth will be meaningfully engaged but the godfathers refused democracy to strive in Edo.

“After 21 years in politics, I do not think it is proper or politically right for political parties to skew party primary to favour a particular candidate. I hope, one day, democracy will be allowed to strive in Edo.

” I have worked hard in the last 21 years to impact the lives of our suffering Edo people with my hard earned personal resources, unfortunately anti-democratic forces will not allow the free will of the people to prevail. I am issuing a one week ultimatum to the leadership of LP to reverse the recognition of Akpata as our party’s candidate. I should be declared winner.”