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NBA denies endorsing any candidate

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By Robert Egbe

Chairman of the Benin branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Pius Oiwoh on Wednesday refuted social media reports that the branch had endorsed a candidate for Saturday’s governorship election.

He said the NBA could not have endorsed anyone because it was an observer in the election, adding that as chairman of a branch, he was also estopped from taking sides.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, is challenging incumbent Godwin Obaseki of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Saturday.

A report had been making the rounds, especially on WhatsApp and Facebook that Oiwoh had given Ize-Iyamu his backing for the election.

Reacting to the claim in a statement, Oiwoh said: “My attention has been drawn to a false, mischievous statement circulating on the social media, that I, Mr. Pius Oiwoh, the chairman of NBA, Benin branch, have endorsed the candidate of the APC, Pastor Ize-Iyamu, in the coming governorship election in Edo State.

“I wish to make it clear that I nor the branch did not endorse any candidate. In fact, the candidates of the two major parties in the coming governorship election visited the Bar secretariat on different days when they were hailed for their support to the Bar and the Judiciary, while their attention was drawn to areas of intervention if elected.

“I even resisted the urge to grant a motion calling for endorsement of the candidate of the APC.

“At the end of such engagements, we urged members to go and vote for a candidate of their choice.

“The NBA is an observer in the election and as chairman of a branch; I am estopped from endorsing a particular candidate

“I urge the public to disregard the aforesaid online publication.”

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