Edo Poll:‎ Benin Palace Chiefs divided over Obaseki, Ize-Iyamu

Edo Poll:‎ Benin Palace Chiefs divided over Obaseki, Ize-Iyamu

Monday, September 19, 2016 10:28 pm


From left: Hon Philip Shaibu, APC gubernatorial running mate; Mr Godwin Obaseki, APC Gubernatorial candidate and Governor Adams Oshiomhole at the flag-off of the gubernatorial campaign of the All Progressives Congress for the September 10 election in the state, at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City, on Saturday.

From left: Hon Philip Shaibu, APC gubernatorial running mate; Mr Godwin Obaseki, APC Gubernatorial candidate and Governor Adams Oshiomhole at the flag-off of the gubernatorial campaign of the All Progressives Congress for the September 10 election in the state, at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City, on Saturday.

Jethro Ibileke/Benin

Ahead of the gubernatorial election in Edo state, now shifted to September 28, chiefs in the palace of Oba of are currently divided along party lines.

This is even as the Palace has lunched a manhunt for a former attendant in the palace who allegedly went to several villages to tell them that the Palace requested its subjects to vote for candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).‎

Some of the palace chiefs belonging to the Egha Evbo’Nore in the palace of the Oba of Benin, including business men and professionals on the platform of Nedoghama Nedo, were said to have adopted the Pastor Ize-Iyamu, while another high-ranking Chief, Osaro Idah, denied that Benin Palace chiefs have endorsed Pastor Ize-Iyamu.

The alleged adoption reportedly took place at the residence of the Esama of Benin Kingdom, Chief Gabriel Igbinedion at the weekend in Benin, where the chiefs also prayed to  God and the ancestors to enable Ize-Iyamu get his heart’s desires.

Ize-Iyamu

Ize-Iyamu

Prominent among Chiefs present at the endorsement were the Eson of Benin Kingdom, Chief Amos Osunbor, Chief Douglas Usoh, the Odobaiwu of Benin, Chief Solomon Ogbewe, Uwayoba of Benin, Chief Jackson Igbinovia Amure, the Osagiobariase of Benin.

The Eson of Benin Kingdom, Chief Amos Osunbor, who allegedly prayed for him on behalf of the Chiefs, said Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s father, late Chief R.O.Ize-Iyamu, a former  Esogban of Benin, was a notable member of the Egha Evbo Nore palace society.

He therefore urged all the Chiefs to support him.

Earlier while addressing the chiefs, Pastor Ize-Iyamu, said he had to see them to solicit for their support and for them to take him as their son.

The governorship hopeful expressed regret that the Benin race has been relegated to the background  as far as infrastructure development was concern, despite the huge allocations that have come to the state in the last years.

He therefore promised to develop all parts of the state if elected as the governor of the state, just as he vowed never to be an ethnic and clannish governor.

However, Chief Osaro Idah, in a swift reaction, who denied that Oba Palace Chiefs endorsed Pastor Ize-Iyamu, warned those involved not to drag the Palace into murky waters of politics, saying that the report of the purported endorsement was laughable‎.

Chief Idah who is the Obazelu of Benin Kingdom and also the State Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), ‎said the Chiefs that were involved in the endorsement were card carrying members of the PDP, adding that they were speaking for themselves and that their views do not represent the views of the Benin Palace Chiefs.

‎According to him, if the Palace must speak on any issue, it was either done through the Iyase of Benin or the Esogban of Benin who is the head of the Benin Forum, describing the so-called Palace adoption of party candidate as a fraud.

Commenting on the alleged endorsement orchestrated by the palace attendant, Chief Idah disclosed that the Palace was in search of one Arase who went to several villages to tell them that the Palace requested its subjects to vote for the PDP.

He explained that the impostor has been excommunicated from the Palace not as a chief but as a Palace attendant.

“Arase has since been suspended from participating in palace activities. He wore palace dress and put on some beads to be seen as a chief. He started going from village to village to meet the elders to vote for the PDP.

“We have been looking for him to face the full wrath of the law because he is not a chief. I am the Obazelu of Benin Kingdom. I am qualified to know who is the Igiehon of Benin. I deal more with Igiehons and others.

“Once they are caught, the Palace will mete out necessary sanctions. They are not chiefs. They have been hiding since we heard about their activities. Once we catch them, we will hand them over to the police.

“The Palace will never call for support for any candidate. We always pray for the best to emerge. We are going to report to appropriate sections of the Palace to look into such defaults,” Chief Idah said.


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