Professor Frederick Ebegue Amadasun, one of those that contested the Edo State governorship primaries of the All Progressives Congress (APC) held in Benin City recently, has said that the eating of corn by some of the aspirants in the street while accompanying Governor Adams Aliu Oshiomhole on project monitoring was a mere campaign gesture.
Professor Amadasun said that those accusing him of selling out for not protesting the conduct of the exercise are just being mischievous.
In an interview with Daily Independent, the Professor of Anaesthesiology at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH) said that prior to the primary he had allayed fears in some quarters that the process would be doctored in favour of one of the aspirants believed to be the incumbent governor, Comrade Adams Aliu Oshiomhole’s preferred choice.
“Some people were of the view that the process would be tampered with, that there would be rigging and other malpractices. However, I told them that it would be crisis-free as it would be done in the way and manner such previous primaries were done – freedom to vote for the aspirant of your choice; orderliness; voting done in the open; sorting of votes done openly; open counting and votes allotted to aspirants as they are scored.
“I believe that is what happened that day. I have no reason to object to the results as there were no discrepancies in the whole process on that day,” he affirmed.
On the insinuations that some of the aspirants sold out, Professor Amadasun said he cannot say anything concerning that as he ran the race according to the laid down rules and regulations of the party.
“If some aspirants were sponsored for the primary, I cannot attest to that but I can speak for myself that I ran the election solely under my sponsorship and financing.
“I recall that a few days to the primary, I had the opportunity to air my honest views at a meeting hosted by Governor Oshiomhole. I bought my forms with my own resources, did my campaign and participated in the primary.
“Now that the primary has been concluded you can see that I am back at my office at the University of Benin Teaching Hospital (UBTH),” he stated.
He countered allegations that he and the four other defeated aspirants who were caught on camera eating corn with Governor Oshiomhole a few days after the guber primary was conducted were showing uncalled for solidarity with the winner, Godwin Noghaghese Obaseki.
“When all the aspirants went to Abuja to submit their completed nomination forms and undergo the screening process, ten of them (I was not invited) held a meeting after which everybody was asked to come and sign a petition that they were forwarding to the national chairman. I declined telling them I could not sign any such thing, as I did not take part in the meeting.
“What I am trying to say is that if aspirants have been meeting before, during or after the primary, it is not a novel idea. So, I don’t see anything wrong for some of us to be seen associating with the governor, who is of the same political party with us, after the primary.
“The comrade governor eating corn with us on the street as a campaign gesture is not strange. He bought corn from a street trader and we joined him in eating it. It is a campaign gesture but if they say it is a magic wand all well and good,” he concluded.