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A former Deputy Speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, Hon Frank Okiye, has said that the All Progressives Congress lost the Presidential and National Assembly election in Edo Central Senatorial district because of the campaign of calumny against President Muhammadu Buhari by some religious groups.

Edo Central comprising of five local government areas is a stronghold of the Peoples Democratic Party. It was only in Igueben that the APC has been able to overrun the PDP in the February 23 general election.

Hon Okiye who is the APC House of Assembly candidate for Esan North East constituency 1 said the influence of late Chief Tony Anenih also played a role.

Okiye noted that the people late Anenih made were still influential and they understand the management of election in a political system.

He, however, insisted that results declared from the district were manipulated in favour of the PDP as records showed there were compromises in some areas.

The former Deputy Speaker said many APC leaders in the zone were not committed and argued that the results were not true reflections of what happened in the field.

On the chances of the APC in Saturday’s election, Okiye said the APC candidates have bright chances of winning the elections.

His words, “Our chances are very bright. We have a number of things going for us. We have captured the national and our people are conscious of joining mainstream politics.

“We have the candidates that are credible and have the capacity to win elections. Our candidates have good public relations with people across political divide. Our people have a bigger picture of what we can get in the likely hood of winning the election. Oipnion moulders are involved and the narration has started changing.

“We have overcome the initial challenges. This election is local. We are facing it ourselves.

“Our people should understand we are one common people. We mean well for them. They should give us opportunity to demonstrate that we can do better.”

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