By Isaac Eranga
The Edo Progressive Indigenous Association (EPIA), also known as Edo Indigenous Movement, said all is set for a Governorship debate comprising all the governership candidates in the forthcoming Edo governorship election bid for September 19, 2020.
This was revealed in a statement signed by the Chairman, Edo Indigenous Publicity and Research Committee (EIPRC), Mr Osazee Nelson Godwin.
The statement has it that the purpose of the debate is for candidates to let the indigenous people know their agenda, thereby using it as a means of signing a contractual agreement with them.
“Gone are the days when people vote for political party and not individuals that reflects the hopes and aspirations of the people. Party affiliation don’t have anything to do with the development of a community or State, it’s the agenda of a person that matters. That is why in EPIA, we don’t endorse candidates, we only endorse agendas.
“The candidates are expected to let the people know what they intend to do when elected as governor of the State. The policies they intend to formulate and the projects they intend to execute. EPIA will join the indigenous people of the State to scrutinise the agendas and then aid them to choose the one that reflects their hopes and the aspirations.
“Our members around the world will be mobilised to support the best of the agendas. So, it is no longer business as usual. We want the best for Edo people.
“We want to also use this debate to send a clear message to all the candidates that are contesting in Edo State that, they should all roll out their agenda and put it on the bill boards across the State.
“Edo indigenes are no longer interested in faces, they are after developmental vision the candidates want to achieve in the next 40 years. We want to be the economic magnet of Africa. The development of Edo State is the business of all its indigenes”, said the statement.
EPIA was established in 2013 to empower Edo Indigenes all over the world and fight against maginaliztion of indigenes in their settlements across the board; to empower Edo indigenous people; to promote Edo indigenous language and culture all over the world; to protect the right of women, children, physically challenged and the vulnerable indigenous people in Edo State and around the world; to create food and welfare bank for Edo indigenous people in every country they are located worldwide; to promote 15% tax cuts for Edo indigenous investors; to promote bursary for Edo indigenous students; to support, encourage and protect the none indigenous investors and the law abiding none indigenes; to promote welfare packages for 60 years and above including the physically challenged , widows, homeless children and abused women among the Edo indigenous people; to promote easy access jobs and loans to Edo indigenous people including loan for small businesses; to take data of all Edo indigenous people all over the the world; and lastly, to help settle Edo Indigenous deportees or the Indigenes that voluntarily return home from the diaspora into a skill acquisition/ vocational school, partnering with European bodies.