Governor Godwin Obaseki, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, has scored the highest votes in Saturday’s Edo State governorship election.
The result of the election held in all Edo’s 18 local governments was declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Sunday in Benin, the state capital.
INEC is, however, yet to formally declare Mr Obaseki the winner of the election.
Mr Obaseki polled 314,676 votes to defeat his main rival, Osagie Ize-Iyamu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who had 223,619 votes.
Mr Obaseki also won in 13 of the 18 local government areas and thus scored more than 25 per cent of votes cast in two-thirds of the local governments in the state to satisfy the second constitutional requirement to be declared governor.
Mr Obaseki won his first election in 2016 as a candidate of the APC, principally supported by Adam Oshiomole, the immediate past governor and former chairman of the APC. Mr Ize-Iyamu was then the candidate of the PDP.
But in the course of his term as the governor, Mr Obaseki became estranged with Mr Oshiomole, causing an epic political battle now capped off with his victory today.
The battle contributed to the fall of Mr Oshiomole as the chairman of the APC. But Mr Obaseki also could not get that party’s ticket and he had to switch to the PDP with his deputy, Phillip Shaibu.
Days ahead of the election, APC leader and former governor of Lagos, Bola Tinubu, had in a recorded broadcast made an “appeal” to the Edo electorate to “reject” Mr Obaseki, whom he dismissed as having no sound democratic credential.