Three days to the national convention of the All Progressives Congress (APC), a chairmanship aspirant, Osereimhen Osunbor, has withdrawn from the race.
Mr Osunbor, a former Edo State governor, in a statement made available to PREMIUM TIMES on Wednesday, said this was done out of respect for President Muhammadu Buhari.
In his statement, he also endorsed another former Edo governor, Adams Oshiomhole, for the chairmanship.
Mr Osunbor is the second aspirant withdrawing from the chairmanship and endorsing Mr Oshiomhole who has the support of President Buhari and top leaders of the party.
The first aspirant to withdraw was Ibrahim Emokpaire, an American based member of the party.
He said he made this decision after extensive discussions and consultations with party members and his family, friends and associates.
In his statement, Mr Osunbor said he withdrew to “avoid unduly prolonging the voting exercise during the national convention,In the interest of a rancour-free national convention and to ease the work of the National Convention Committee and in the overall interest of our party the All Progressives Congress”.
“I have decided to withdraw from the race and also endorse Adams Oshiomhole,” he said.
He appreciated and called for the understanding of those who expressed support for his candidature, and may feel disappointed by this development.
With this withdrawal, it appears only one contender, Clement Ebri of Cross River, remains to challenge for the chairmanship with Mr Oshiomhole expected to easily win the race.