Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State on Saturday expressed confidence that his Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, would perform better in the Saturday House of Assembly election than it did at the February 25 presidential and National Assembly elections.
Obaseki, who voted at about 10.17 am at Emokpae Primary School Mission Road Benin, Oredo Local Government Area Ward 4, declared that he, being the governor of the state, had confidence in victory after the election.
“I am the governor of Edo State”, Obaseki declared, smiling, when provided about his hope of winning his Unit 19 polling centre, which he lost to the Labour Party on February 25.
He decried the abysmally low turnout of voters, blaming such on the heavy presence of security personnel across the state.
“This is not the set of turnout we find or get in elections in this centre. The extreme security measures that have been taken should be relaxed. As you can see, there is a total lockdown in the city which is not allowing people to come out to exercise their franchise.
“Yes, it is important that we have security. But it cannot be this overwhelming because this overwhelming presence of security men across the city is a deterrent and scary for most people to stay in.
“If you recall some people’s polling units had been moved away from where they live, therefore, they may not be able to work through their polling units and will need to drive. With the kind of barriers and barricades put across the city, people will not be able to get to their polling units.
“So, I am appealing to the security agencies, while having their eyes and maintaining tight security, they should – when people have a proof for instance they have their Permanent Voters Card (PVC) and want to vote – be allowed to exercise their franchise so that we can allow more people to come and vote.
“We are encouraging Edo citizens to come and vote as there is adequate security. I have just spoken to the police authority and security agencies to allow those who want to vote and have proof of their PVCs to vote”, Obaseki appealed.
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