The candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC) in Edo State, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has said that he will continue to pursue peace and concentrate on his SIMPLE agenda throughout the campaign.
He said contrary to fears being expressed, the election will be violence-free. Ize-Iyamu told reporters in Lagos that the APC will not resort to insults, but run an issue-based campaigns.
He said when the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in collusion with the Edo State government, destroyed his billboards, which were paid for, he appealed to his loyalists not to retaliate.
Ize-Iyamu said no single billboard of the PDP has been destroyed in the state.
He stressed: “We have said that we want this election to be issue-based. We don’t want to resort to name-calling and insults. We want to focus on our SIMPLE agenda. I can assure you that we as a party will do everything to avoid violence”.
“The PDP have posters and billboards all around the place. In fact, they started before us by putting billboards around the place. We got agents to help us ask the state government how much we need to pay for the available spaces, they told us and we paid”.
“However, a top government official said how can they allow APC have billboards in strategic locations? He then ordered them to go and remove the billboards. So, they began to remove our billboards”.
“Rather than resolve to violence, we wrote a petition to the Commissioner of Police, we also did the same thing to Director of DSS and Patrick Obahiagbon addressed the press where he advised the PDP to be accommodating, tolerant and avoid things that could trigger violence”.
“We could have taken the law into our hands by destroying their billboards also but we didn’t do it. From then till now, they have not mentioned that one of their billboards was destroyed. They destroyed our billboards at night, we too could have done any of their own at night, but we just left it”.
“So, let me assure you that by the grace of God, there will be no violence. We will do our best by cooperating with the security agencies and other relevant authorities and then, we believe it will be peaceful.”
On the issue of moles within the APC, Ize-Iyamu said the party has put in place modalities to deal with them. He also said he will focus more on using the media to get his message across to the people as he intends to limit physical contact due to the COVID-19 pandemic.