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As Edo Governorship Election Draws Nearer By Ehi Ekhator

Reading Time: 6 minutes

The sacked National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress Adams Oshiomhole returned to the public domain after his hard exit from the National Chair.

As the battle for the seat of supremacy approaches, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Godwin Obaseki and the flagbearer of the All Progressives Congress Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu have kicked-off their campaign trail.

Oshiomhole is back to the campaign trail, but this time, in support of Ize-Iyamu, a man he had campaigned against in 2016.

Obaseki and Ize-Iyamu
Obaseki and Ize-Iyamu

His many indignities in 2016 have formed part of the PDP campaign, in an attempt, to discredit whatever he has to say in 2020.

While speaking with the Enigies at the Palace of its President, His Royal Highness, Edomwonyi Iduozee Ogiebean, the Enigie of Egbaen town to present the core policies and plans of his campaign manifesto, The Simple Agenda, Oshiomhole apologised for believing in Obaseki.

He said Obaseki pretended for 8 years to support his uncompleted projects but abandoned them for China consultancy.

Oshiomhole and Obaseki had been at loggerhead after the former governor accused Obaseki of abandoning his projects, while the governor claimed his predecessor intimidated and oppressed him on many occasions.

Many of the argument is that Oshiomhole is trying to plant himself as a godfather, a name he once hated and fought against during his administration as the governor.

Oshiomhole had also denied the allegations, claiming he wants the best for Edo State. He has insinuated on many occasions that Obaseki betrayed his legacies and abandoned his allies.

Oshiomhole told the Enigies “I want to start by apologising that my understanding that my successor will continue with the project that we started but along the line, he stopped everything.

“I apologised that I brought the man who pretended for eight years that he will build on the foundation that I laid, only for him, not only abandon the foundation but allow it to be flooded by water and started doing consultancy for printing, consultancy for MoU and consultancy for everything. If you are in my shoes, will you be happy? To see what you did with people’s money being run down and Benin is back in the back.

“You go and sign MoU in China, you beam it on Television, very good, you tell us by 2018 that there will be a modular refinery, this modular refinery will guarantee fuel security and the price will come down and it will create thousands of jobs, now we are in 2020, have you seen modular refinery?” Oshiomhole asked the hyper crowd who chorused in unison, ‘no!’

In his defence to the claim he is a godfather, Oshiomhole continued that “When you market somebody that he will continue the project of Imark, and he abandoned it and started spending money on consultancy, will you be happy? Do you need to be a godfather, a godson, a godmother to be able to advise someone to keep to the promise?

“When they are using my campaign, what I said about the Pastor, Pastor has never been the governor, there is what we called tested and trusted. We have tested Obaseki and he failed, therefore, we cannot do reseat.

“I want to assure you, I apologise for my poor judgement. As they say, you can never know a human being until he has money and power, then his true colour will come out.

“If those who told me that this man will betray, they have turned out to be true. God has a reason for keeping me alive and well and strong so that working with you, your highnesses, we will correct the mistakes and bring someone who will make up for lost times.”

Three PDP Leaders Teased Oshiomhole, Says South-south Belongs to PDP

On Saturday, three PDP leaders, Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state, his Sokoto counterpart, Aminu Tambuwal and the Chairman of the party, Prince Uche Secondus teased Oshiomhole while assuring that Obaseki will be re-elected.

The leaders said godfatherism is dead in Edo State, referring to Adams Oshiomhole’s alleged self-styled imposition.

The trio spoke at the inauguration of Obaseki re-election campaign at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City, Edo State.

The Rivers State Governor said PDP runs south-south, noting that nobody will allow APC to rig the governorship election scheduled to hold on September 19.

“Former APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, is making a U-turn to lick his vomit by presenting a candidate he earlier rejected and castigated. Today, we are here to tell the people of Edo State that they should not be afraid because nobody can rig the forthcoming election.

“Today is the end of godfatherism in Edo State. I want to thank Governor Godwin Obaseki for refusing to dance to the tune of godfatherism.

“Four years ago, Adams Oshiomhole said he cannot trust the APC governorship candidate that he was rusticated from school.

“Today, Oshiomhole is coming back to present the same person to Edo people. He thinks Edo people are fools. I challenge Edo people not to vote any person presented to them by Oshiomhole.”

Aminu Tambuwal said “He (Oshiomhole) was all over the place in the past, condemning godfatherism, but now wants to become a godfather in Edo,” Tambuwal said.

Secondus in his statement commended the Edo State Governor for a job well done in the development of the state.

Clashes between Obaseki and Ize-Iyamu Supporters

Though the two top candidates have publicly urged their followers to adopt peace, the reality has been that of a war zone between enemy states.

On Saturday at King Square, popularly known as Ring Road, members of the PDP and APC clashed prior to the inauguration of Obaseki’s campaign.

The supporters of both candidates engaged in a shootout around the palace of the Oba of Benin.

According to Punch reports, the trouble started when Obaseki visited the Oba of Benin’s palace.

The footsoldiers of the APC chanted songs allegedly demeaning Obaseki and his entourage, which led to confrontations.

After Obaseki left, Ize-Iyamu and his followers also visited the Benin Monarch, Oba Ewuari II.

It was reported that the PDP followers, angered by APC earlier demean went for a reprisal. They made their way from the stadium to the Oba’s palace where they engaged the APC supporters in a free-for-all.

Both parties sustained various degrees of injuries while some properties in millions were also destroyed during the clash.

The two runner-ups have been trading blames over the attacks.

Oshiomhole isn’t the only one that switches sides. The PDP who had once graded Obaseki administration as F9 is channelling his second coming.

When asked on the irony, the State Publicity Secretary Chris Nehikhare told THE LONDON POST that “Our previous criticism of Governor Obaseki was constitutional and done in the interest of Edo state and it’s people. It was done to had zest to his performance for the benefit of Edo people. We are glad we did as our position exposed the pressure he was under to open up Edo treasury for the self-imposed godfather and members of his cabal. Our position and his desire to serve and satisfy Edo people and not individuals led to the position we are in today. By the time he started to resist the godfather and his goons, he was able to concentrate and improve on his service delivery. Governor Obaseki must be commended. He has been dogged and enthusiastic about Edo development and growth”

With Oshiomhole returning to the scene of the crime, it is obvious that Obaseki has a big work on his hands as the former APC Chairman is blessed with the power of oratory.

With the level of disregard for order and desperation perceived from both camps, it is worrisome what the September 2020 bears.

The alleged neophyte governor has been reborn and learned the art of Nigerian politics and is set to face an experienced, popular and calculated candidate of the APC.

Obaseki might know the inner workings of Adams Oshiomhole, however, this coming election means a lot to the sacked National Chairman as losing might send a sign of weakness and mockery on his integrity in a system that is already doubting his capabilities.

On the other hand, Obaseki knows the consequencies of losing the election. Failing to secure the Osadebe Avenue will unleash a horror of investigations from Ize-Iyamu government. Every moves will undermine, discredit and blacklist his image, perhaps, silenced his 4-years alleged achievements.

Note: What’s your take on it. If you have any information, video, documents, about the two candidates, write us on [email protected]

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