One of the aspirants jostling for the ticket of the Labour Party, in the forthcoming governorship election in Edo State, Dr Azemhe Azena, has resigned from the party.
Azena in the resignation letter dated January 27, 2024, which was addressed to the Ward 10 chairman of the party in Okpekpe, Etsako-East Local Government Area of the state, attributed his decision to dump the party to ill-treatment allegedly meted on him and his supporters by Michael Onaivi, the Akoko-Edo local government chairman of the party during his tour of the local government.
The LP chieftain had alleged that Onaivi prevented him and his team from entering into the local government.
The televangelist, who is the Pastor, of Southern Region 2 of Omega Fire Ministries, Benin City, is one of the 18 governorship aspirants who protested the N30 million fees for the purchase of Expression of Interest and nomination forms on Thursday.
Meanwhile, he had on Wednesday boasted, while speaking with newsmen at the Benin Airport, on his journey from an overseas trip, that N30 million will not stop him from contesting the party governorship primary election scheduled for February 22, 2024.
However, Azena in his resignation letter, said, “My decision to leave the party I have so much laboured for is based on the ill-treatment I got when I embarked on a political tour of all the local government areas in Edo North, where I came from, between 27 and 30 of December 2023.
“It was to my utmost surprise that the leadership of the Labour Party in Akoko-Edo, led by the Local Government Area chairman, Mr Michael Onaivi, resisted and prevented my team and I from entering into the Local Government for the said visit.”
Claiming to have reported the incident to Chris Ighodalo, Leader of Edo North Senatorial District of the party, the politician said that several entreaties to the chairman by the senatorial leader to allow his team to visit the local government were all to no avail.
“I wrote a protest letter to the senatorial leadership, copying the state leadership and have personally met with the senatorial leader over the issue, up until today, nothing has been said or done about it.
“That one man can prevent an aspirant and his team from entering any part of a senatorial zone to which the aspirant himself hails from speaks of lawlessness and wanton impunity that should not be accepted by anybody in a party that preaches justice and equality,” he added.
However, he opined that the alleged ill-treatment was a slap on the sensitivity of the members of the party in Etsako, Edo-North and the entire party members in Edo State.
The former LP aspirant however commended the leadership of the party in the state for the opportunity to serve as an active member in the past.