Oba of Benin intervenes into Edo lawmaker crisis, advocate for peace

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*Owie counsels lawmakers

By Simon Ebegbulem, Benin-City

The Oba of Benin, Omo n’Oba Erediauwa, has waded into the crisis rocking Edo State House of Assembly, urging the actors to allow peace to reign.

The Oba, who told politicians not to plunge Edo into crisis, held a meeting with leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in his palace, yesterday. He appealed to the political parties to resolve their political differences in the interest of peace and security.

Oba Erediauwa
Oba Erediauwa

A statement issued by the palace and personally signed by His Royal Majesty, the Oba of Benin said: “I thank leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Peoples Democratic party (PDP) for honouring my invitation at short notice.

“I invited you to my palace to appeal to you on the need to allow peace continue to reign in Edo State, I know youo as politicians have a way of resolving political issues, no matter how delicate and sensitive the issues are.
“Politicians in Edo State, regardless of whichever political parties they belong to, I am quite sure, will do all they can to ensure that our great state especially Benin City, the capital, is not made ungovernable for political reasons. I know as citizens of Edo State, you will always do all you can to protect our people and our land.

“On this very note, taking into consideration what has been happening since the beginning of this week, I am appealing to you not to engage in the destruction of lives and properties for whatever reasons. I also appeal to you as you leave here to have the interest of Edo State at heart and amicably resolve whatever political disagreement you may have, which I am sure, you are well capable of resolving for peace and security to reign. I thank you for coming and God bless you all.”

Representing the APC at the meeting were Dr Pius Odubu, Deputy Governor of Edo State and Hon Patrick Obahiagbon, Chief of Staff to the Governor.

Chief Dan Orbih, PDP Chairman, Mr Lucky Imasuen, one-time Deputy Governor, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu and Hon Festus Ebea, suspended Speaker of the State House of Assembly represented the PDP.

Meanwhile, a former Chief Whip of the Senate, Senator Rowland Owie, has urged the warring members of the House not to allow people he described as “ambitious politicians” ruin their career and the prevailing peace in the state.

Owie, who was reacting to the crisis in the parliament, said: “Our legislators in Edo should seek peace among themselves and should not allow over ambitious politicians to drag the state to dishonour. The new PDP in Edo state under the chairmanship of Chief Dan Orbih believe in the rule of law and not thuggery.

“Nobody knows whom the stone thrown in the market will hit. Senators and members of the House of Representatives have decamped to APC, PDP and vice versa, but they are in harmony in their various chambers.

That of Edo State should not be different. Above all, PDP government under President Goodluck Jonathan does not go after perceived enemies. We, in PDP, pray for perceived enemies to be able to see the light of God and choose love rather than hate”.

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