Odubu as an unblemished gubernatorial aspirant/ Dr. Pius Odubu

What are the competitive edges a politician should equip himself with to conveniently defeat his political rivals? The foregoing is the question which most politicians do not ask themselves in this part of the world.  A politician is differentiated based on his apparent abilities and uniqueness.

There is no denying the fact that most politicians as can be found in political history and in the media, are traditionally weighed down by baggage of scandals, particularly during electioneering. In most cases, the scandal usually erase one’s political shine and to a large extent negate the acceptability of the political party the controversial candidate is affiliated to, and consequently affect the party’s chance at the poll. 

From my sense of logic, when a politician is humiliated through scandals, especially for being notorious of cross carpeting, being involved in financial sleaze, being enmeshed in any kind of scandal, not being a man of integrity or any other unpleasant way that could downgrade the politician's public image, it logically means that such act can, may be, during and after the election affect the candidate and his affiliated party. In Nigeria, without being specific, situations were already won elections were annulled are not rare.

Baggage of scandals that usually haunt some politicians are usually orchestrated and amplified by their political rivals with the mischievous aim of limiting the politician’s chances at the poll, and in some worst cases ending the politician's career or blocking his possible entrance to certain political position that is also eagerly eyed by his political rival.

I am not interested in this context to elaborate the kind of scandals that politicians are usually enmeshed in, and which are capable of damaging their image and the party’s chances at the poll. But as a writer, I would like to bring readers into a food for thought that could reshape a public perspective on politics, particularly as regard how it is played in Edo State. Why would a party field a candidate that is entangled in the labyrinth of scandal for an election; would it not have been nice if such candidate is meticulously screened or even screened out ahead of the primary election as a way of saving the party from losing an already won election?

The reason for screening out a candidate that is been trailed by scandal is to save the party from trouble. As it is proverbially put, a stitch in time saves nine.

At this juncture, permit me to say that the candidacy of Odubu will in political history remain one of the best decision that Edo APC will be happy for in years to come, and it will no doubt form the basis of setting a yardstick in the party’s future selection process of candidates that would be fielded for its primary election and general election.

Without any scintilla of hyperbole, it is germane to say that the selection of candidates for elective office, particularly at the gubernatorial stage, is a key stage in the recruitment function that political parties perform in democratic societies. The candidate who his party selects defines the leadership and representational options available to voters.

In dominant party systems or in party strongholds, political leaders may even be predetermined by a party’s choice of candidates. Process and outcome not only reflect a party’s values and operating environment, they have broad implications for a party’s public image: they can make the difference between a united, energized organization and one that is demoralized and divided. In either case, the implications for a party’s chances of electoral success cannot be overstated.

To further explain that Odubu is an unblemished aspirant to Osadebey Avenue, it is germane to illustratively say that in a very real sense that the politicians we elect to represent us are our employees, and indeed they have a difficult job to perform. Their job has many facets, all of which must be considered. First and foremost, the politician Edolites need in the next political dispensation must be able and willing to govern the State for which he was elected according to the will of the people. Secondly, he must represent all Edolites; irrespective of the ethnic and religious groups they are affiliated to.  He must work with other politicians of widely different concepts of what is best, and he must do this within the confines of extant laws.

A good employee is one with integrity and honesty, and will perform his task to the best of his ability. His own desires and needs will be put aside when on the job. A good employee will, if unsure on how to proceed, should ask for help or advice. Without doubt, Odubu surely fits into the foregoing description of the candidate which APC and Edolites need.

At this juncture, it is expedient to ask, what makes Odubu a political asset rather that a political liability to Edo APC?   

In answering the foregoing question, it is expedient to say that Odubu personified the saying, “Character is what you do when no one else is watching.” He is no doubt a man of integrity that values what is honest, true, noble, trustworthy, kind, and right, ahead of personal gain. There is no denying the fact that the virtue is firmly embedded in his foundation that integrity has ceased to be optional to him but instead has become a way of life.

Besides Odubu’s integrity which most of his close followers can attest to, all the documents or rather certificates and degrees corroborating his academic and professional pursuits are not questionable. His qualifications, majorly obtained from the United States of America, do not make anyone to raise an eyebrow whenever they are presented to any relevant authority.

Not only that, Odubu is an experienced politician as far as going to Osadebey Avenue is concerned. Why? He has the ability and understanding of continuing from where Comrade Adams Oshiomhole stopped as the governor in 2016 by virtue of being the deputy governor for a period of 8 years, and a lawmaker in two different political dispensations.

Leadership of the Edo APC should not fail to realize that the most fundamental principles that define credible elections are that they must reflect the free expression of the will of the people. To achieve this, elections should be transparent, inclusive, and accountable, and there must be equitable opportunities to compete in the elections. These broad principles are buttressed by several electoral process-related obligations as well as a number of key rights and freedoms, each of which derive from public international law. The electoral cycle approach depicts elections as a continuous, integrated process made up of building blocks that interact with and influence each other, rather than as a series of isolated events.