Former Edo State Governor, Prof. Oserheimen Osunbor, on Thursday, said he was not too old to clinch the All Progressives Congress ticket in the race to choose a candidate ahead of the state governorship election.
While challenging his critics and political opponents to a racing contest, the 72-year-old politician expressed conviction that age won’t be a stumbling block to his ambition to return to the State House 16 years after his exit.
Osunbor gave the challenge when he turned up at the party secretariat in Abuja to procure the N50m Expression of Interest and Nomination form to officially join the governorship race.
Addressing a press conference after picking his form, the two-term senator stressed that good governance should not be sacrificed for age.
He said, “If you see any of them (critics), tell them to come out and challenge me to a race and see if i don’t meet up. It is about how healthy you are. There should also be an emphasis on good governance.
“These parameters keep adjusting from time to time. There was a time when we used to hear that eggs are bad for the aged. But recently we were told eggs are good. At one time, they said 70 (years)
is the beginning of old age. Now, they said it is 80.”
On whether he is seeking to return to Edo Government House for any ‘unfinished business’ 16 years after he was kicked out, Osunbor said, “I didn’t forget anything there and I have no such thing as unfinished business. I’m going back there for me to affect the lives of Edo people positively.”
Osunbor’s removal as Edo State governor was affirmed by an Appeal Court in 2008.
The Court of Appeal said Oserheimen Osunbor of the then Peoples Democratic Party was elected unlawfully and did not get most votes in the April 2007 election, which was allegedly marred by vote-rigging, ballot-stuffing and intimidation of the opposition.
The court upheld the judgment of an election petition tribunal that annulled the governor’s victory.
After his ouster, the court sitting in Benin immediately declared Osunbor’s rival, Adams Oshiomhole, of the Action Congress, as the rightful winner and duly elected governor of the state.
But Osunbor refuted the allegation that the political differences had led to a frosty relationship between him and the former labour leader.
“Oshiomhole is, as you said, the leader of APC in Edo State and I enjoy a very good relationship with him,” the former governor told journalists on Thursday.