A former Managing Director, Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA), Emmanuel Jime, has won the APC governorship ticket for the 2019 general elections in Benue.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the primaries originally slated to hold on Sunday failed to hold on account of late arrival of sensitive voting materials.
NAN also reports that all other five aspirants for the governorship slot stepped down for Mr Jime, a former federal legislator.
Those who stepped down for Mr Jime were Akange Audu, Asema Achado, Michael Iordye, Titus Zam and Benjamin Adanyi.
Addressing the journalists on their decision to step down for Mr Jime, Mr Audu said they all voluntarily stepped down to allow Mr Jime emerge the party’s flag bearer.
He said they all signed an agreement before the leader of the party in the state and other party stalwarts.
The chairman of the governorship primaries in the state, Mutiu Are, who conducted the polls by affirmation, therefore, asked those who were in support of Mr Jime’s candidature to affirm by voice vote.
He, therefore, declared Mr Jime winner after the affirmation of the yes votes.
Speaking at the occasion, George Akume, leader of the party in the state, commended the aspirants for their decision to endorse Mr Jime as their candidate and said with his emergence, the party was sure to wrest power from the PDP in 2019.
In his acceptance speech, Mr Jime said he was determined, with the support of the party, to rescue Benue from the clutches of underdevelopment and poverty.
He regretted that the sacrifices of the founding fathers of Benue were being mortgaged by politicians without foresight and pledged to tackle the development challenges confronting the state.
He said the state had fallen into the tragedy of a failed government and regretted that those entrusted with the task of providing security, welfare had become “treacherous accomplices”.
The governorship candidate urged all party members to roll up their sleeves for the task of redeeming the state from those mismanaging its resources.
He assured of running an “issue-based campaign devoid of bitterness and desperation”.
“We will serve our people and not use brute force to coerce them,”he pledged.
The candidate, who was born on June 20, 1962, bagged a degree in law from ABU Zaria in 1983.
He served in the House of Representatives between 2007 and 2015 and was also a former Speaker, Benue House of Assembly.
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