Coronavirus Infection… Edo Hits High on the Eve of APC, PDP Primaries

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The official figure of Covid-19 infection and death in Nigeria is reported on the increase. The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC put the current figure at 7,526, with 265 new cases.

In the figures released by the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, on Saturday, Lagos topped the chart with 133 new cases, while Oyo ramped up 34 new infections.

Edo continued to compete for top records with 28 fresh cases. Ogun wit 23 new cases and FCT, 22 cases, are trailing the heartbeat state.

Experts have expressed concern that the impending Primaries of the All Progressives Congress, APC in Edo State will be a fertile ground for Coronavirus to spread.

Already, the two contending camps of the ruling APC are pushing for two processes – Direct and Indirect Primaries.

According to NCDC, 7,526 cases have been confirmed, 2,174 cases have been discharged and 221 deaths have been recorded in 34 states, including Edo and the Federal Capital Territory.

Article 20 of APC Constitution prescribed the modalities for nominating candidates to include Direct and Indirect Primaries.

The Direct process is conducted simultaneously at all the 192 wards in the state, while the Indirect involves party delegates that were elected earlier to function as Electoral College.

In 2016, the APC deployed only the principal delegates, drawn from the Wards, LGAs, and State Executives to elect the incumbent Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki. The venue was Dr. Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium.

Presently, the National Working Committee of APC led by Mr. Adams Oshiomhole has approved Direct primary to pick the party’s gubernatorial candidate.

This decision has been received with mixed feelings, especially from the opposing faction. They cited the lack of “reliable register of members” and the preponderance of the Coronavirus pandemic in the state.

The People’s Democratic Party, PDP is yet to announce the modalities it intends to use to produce her flag bearer.

Instructively, the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, while reinstating its earlier timetable for the election in Edo and Ondo, explained that the processes leading to the two governorship elections will be conducted electronically.

It is however unclear how the electoral body will evaluate the workability of the two options that are being canvassed by pro Oshiomhole and Governor Godwin Obaseki’s group.

A confidant source at INEC told Midwest Herald that their decision will be informed by scientific report from the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 as well as that of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.

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