Edo state Governor, Godwin Obaseki has gazetted a new rule forbidden direct primary in the state.
The rule has now made it impossible for the National Working Committee of the APC conduct its preferred direct primary to choose its governorship candidate for the September 19 election in the state.
The Special Adviser on Media and Communication Strategy to the governor, Crusoe Osagie, maintained that only indirect primary could hold in the state in accordance with the rule gazetted in newspapers on Friday.
Osagie went on to say that the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 has said in its briefings that states should manage the pandemic through measures unique to their states, noting that it was on this basis of that the state government took the decision to gazette rules that bars direct primaries.
The new rule partly reads:
“That in respect of political gatherings for the purpose of conducting primaries for any of the parties desiring to field candidates in the forthcoming gubernatorial election, gatherings of more than 20 persons may be allowed, subject to the written approval of the Governor, if such gatherings do not exceed 5,000 persons; hold in Benin City and in a single facility with a large seating capacity of not less than 10,000 persons; are provided with adequate health, safety and sanitary facilities and are COVID-19 response compliant with social distancing policy, hand-washing and proper use of face masks fully observed.”