The crisis rocking the Delta State chapter of the All Progressives Congress on Monday escalated when two parallel governorship primaries declared Prof Pat Utomi and Chief Great Ogboru as the winners of the governorship candidates of the party.
While the faction led by Chief Cyril Ogodo declared Utomi as the candidate of the party, the one led by Prophet Jones Erue picked Ogboru, who was the 2015 governorship candidate of the Labour Party, for the 2019 governorship election.
Utomi and Ogboru both defeated two other aspirants including a former Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Victor Ochei, and a former National Deputy Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Dr Cairo Ojougboh.
Both primaries began on Sunday through Monday before results were declared. The primaries held simultaneously at Nero’s Hotels and Federal College of Education (Technical) both in Asaba.
The exercise which started on Sunday ended in the early hours of Monday following the declaration of results by the returning officer, Favour Adibor, in Asaba on Monday.
Utomi polled 2,486 votes to defeat three other aspirants for the governorship ticket of the APC at the primary which was generally peaceful.
Ochei polled 801 to come distant second while Ojougboh scored 368 votes to come third.
Chief Great Ogboru came fourth with 106 votes. A total of 3, 755 votes were cast by delegates.
However, Ogboru emerged in another parallel primary which was conducted and supervised by General Lawrence Onoja, who doubled as the returning officer for the exercise.
Ogboru, who is contesting for the fifth time to rule the oil-rich state, was declared winner at a primary organised by Erue-led factional state executive committee.
While announcing the results, Onoja said Ogboru polled a total of 3,292 votes to defeat his closest rival, Ochei, who scored 160.
Utomi scored 26 votes while Ojougboh polled 12.
Speaking on his emergence, Utomi, who was represented by Dr Nosike Agokei, thanked the delegates from the 25 local government areas of the state for affirming him as the most preferred aspirant to rescue the state from the PDP.
He called on party faithful to join forces with him to ensure that the APC win Delta in 2019, promising that his administration would focus on reviving the different sectors of the economy.
Similarly, Ogboru on his part called on his challengers to join hands with him to defeat thePDP and Governor Ifeanyi Okowa at the general elections next year.