Oshiomhole and Obaseki
Comrade Flynn Imariagbe, Vice Chairman of Edo Accord lnitiative, AEI, a Benin-based non-political group, says the group wants Governor Godwin Obaseki and the national chairman of the APC, Adams Oshionhole, to sheath their sword in the interest of the state and the party
Edo Accord Initiative, EAI, a non-political group and key player in the emergence of Godwin Obaseki as candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the 2015 Edo state governorship election, at its emergency stakeholders’ meeting, has observed keenly the state of affairs and the crises presently rocking the state chapter of the party.
With the election of the chairman of EAI, Hon. Dennis Idahosa, as member of the House of Representative (Ovia Federal Constituency), we can longer keep quiet over the crisis rocking the APC in the state.
We had earlier believed that the sparks igniting the fire within the party will die naturally, but we have since discovered that some persons with selfish interest are hiding under a perceived misunderstanding between the APC National party chairman Adams Oshiomhole and Governor Godwin Obaseki (GGO), to cause a disaffection in the party.
As a matter of exigency we are calling on our leaders, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and HE, Governor Godwin Obaseki, to shelve whatever differences some mischief makers are trying to create within the two of them and quit wasting energy on issues that would at the long run be detrimental to the benefit of the party and Edo people.
They both mean well for Edo and would at every given instance ensure the best for its people. It is best that they understand that the recent development in the state is not in any way their making, but that of individuals poised to benefit from the quarrel they intend to create.
Oshiomhole (right) presenting Obaseki as governorship candidate of the APC in 2016
Obaseki has never been known for patronage of thugs as a means to an end and will not in any way start now. Neither will Comrade Oshiomhole who laid the foundation for the democracy and government which the Edo people now enjoy, to be involved in uprooting and destroying the foundation which he labored and fought so hard to build.
He championed the end-of-god fatherism in Edo state and crested the one-man-one-vote insignia in the annals of Edo Politics. Comrade Oshiomhole in his Wisdom made the path straight and cleared the hedges that GGO would face as a governor, in his fight against what would have now posed a challenge to GGO, a formidable foundation of progress for anybody after him to build on.
Oshiomhole became like the biblical Prophet John the Baptist who layed the path straight for the prophet to come, Oshiomhole saw the vision that as it where then, in the position he has placed in the state he needed a man, with the foresight, vision, background, and intelligence to continue from where he stopped. Hence he had to choose Godwin Nogheghase (that whose time has come), GGO.
EAI immediately keyed into the vision and we are indeed happy that today GGO has not in any way let neither us nor National Chairman down in the developmental strides he has brought to. He has taken the state from where he met it to become a pride of every Edo indigene. These developmental strides that spring up in nooks and crannies across the state has further led to him being nicknamed the wake and see governor by the people. It goes to show that Oshiomhole was and still is indeed a visionary leader.
EAI from our point of view given the visible evidence available to us can state with a big grin on our face that Oshiomhole’s biggest legacy to the Edo people has been picking GGO to succeed him, GGO has been living up to all expectations not withstanding complaints from the APC political class.
At this time in the history of Edo politics and the APC; Oshiomhole has done his bit and handed over to a worthy successor, it is only fair that he minimizes his control on the state politics, as a bigger and greater task is at his table right now at the national level, and so far these distractors on both side have refused to allow the national chairman to concentrate on the national task. At the stage Edo state politics and the APC has developed to, the war songs singers should be fully aware that the interference of the national chairman in state party affairs should be at the instance of the Governor. Having laid the necessary foundation that ensures there is no love lost between himself and GGO on personal basis.
Oshiomhole (left) Obaseki (centre) at a campaign ground
Edo accord initiative is calling on all those behind the crisis, to please, for the good of Edo state, quit their self-centered pursuit of personal aggrandizement and for the sake of the greater good of the Edo people, shelve their quest for power and recognition and toe a line of peace to avoid a sorry situation where the opposition will have an upper hand in the fight they are presently trying to create, for our elders have a saying that “where brothers fight themselves to death, strangers inherit their inheritance.”
The APC as a party must learn to avoid washing its dirty linen in the public, as the idea of always running to the electronic, print and social media on every issue that crops up will only be arming the opposition with the needed tools to fight and dislodge her of power.
GGO should understand that those aggrieved and complaining of none inclusiveness in his government should equally be taken into consideration. The party faithful who labored for his emergence right from nomination to when he became governor should be engaged in one way or the other, because they were the ones who held the structure that led to his nomination and eventual election.
Comrade Oshiomhole has his style of leadership and governance which he applied and succeeded with in his time, the same way GGO has his style of governance which he is using and is succeeding and Edo people are benefiting from. People must equally understand that the level at which Adams Oshiomhole engaged them cannot be the same level at which GGO will engage them.
Leadership is not a popularity contest, but the direction and what you believe in. We must learn to conform to GGO’s style of governance, which is exactly what Edo needs right now to reposition it as a viable economy for both investors and their business to thrive. What should be most important to the Edo people is that GGO is doing well and creating a better Edo for all, and as such we should support him. This is what the national chairman of the party envisaged long ago by ensuring that GGO succeeded him.
There is no gain saying that the national chairman’s time as governor came and has gone, with Edo benefiting immensely. GGO’s time has come and is now, and the developmental strides of his time is visible for all to see. Suffice it is to say that without the former, there cannot be the latter; the foundation has been laid and the project is in top gear at Next Level. They both built a template for the betterment of Edo. It goes without saying that both the national chairman and GGO must speak to the people and only that way can everyone understand that they both mean well for Edo. Their primary duties as leaders must not be left in the hands of their followers.
These followers who are out for their personal interests, rather than the collective interest of Edo, should understand that we cannot be deceived. Edo Accord lnitiative is calling and pleading with our leaders, Comrade Oshiomhole and Governor Godwin Obaseki, to kindly find time to seat down and discuss amongst themselves, heart-to-heart, like brothers, comrades and allies that they have always been, and ask themselves if it is beneficial at all. It is equally important that no matter what it is or what they might have been told by their teeming supporters, for a healthy relationship in Edo, they must find a way to come to a common ground and do away with crisis. There is never a time too late to sheath swords, for most elongated crisis are not really prolonged due to the ideology, but ego. Compromises must be made, sacrifices must be made, for the progress of the party and Edo state in general.
The good work of Obaseki, his deputy Rt. Hon. Philip Shaibu, along with the SSG, Barr. Osarodion Ogie, is so far greatly appreciated by the organization and Edo people in general. It is clear they have done tremendously well and will loudly be applauded and supported for a re-election. However there is more to be done as this good work is not in any way near completion.
We call on our amiable Governor and trust his capacity to make use of other mechanisms, to see how to bridge the gap of disconnect between him and the agitators in the party. It is not strange to party politics, there has been and will always be agitators, but a leader must understand that both the agitators and others are all part of his constituency and as such, there should be that point of marriage between all.
Regarding the state assembly, the APC should try not to create an opposition within and against itself; this will lead to self-destruction. Fighting ourselves after the victory which saw us win all house of assembly seats, has led to swearing in some members and leaving out others. It only shows that having all available seats in the house without a proper check and balance mechanism and an internal crises management structure in place has now become their undoing.
There are no better people to resolve this but the governor and the national chairman. The matter should be resolved via a proper internal crises management structure and all members inaugurated as they are all children of the same family and therefore, bothering issues could be looked into using other the party’s in-house crises resolution mechanism.
As regards the call for Comrade Oshiomhole’s resignation as national party chairman in some quarters, we condemn it in totality and state categorically that as Edo people, we are fully with the chairman, having been satisfied with his dexterity and capacity of delivering on his duties as the APC national party chairman, observing to do rightly, the constitution that sees party as supreme in matters of APC and its member. The template he set that when tomorrow comes and the party at the state level definitely picks GGO as its flag bearer in the 2020 governorship election, the decision of the state party should remain supreme and must be upheld.
We support our national party chairman, we support our state governor and we shall continue to support the APC. It is far more expensive to engage in warfare than to make peace. Peace of Edo people is paramount than the consequences and casualties of crisis. Peace at this time in the history of Edo is necessary, not because conflicts are not a right of the people, all issues raised should be x-rayed and proper solution adopted to accommodate everyone’s demand. It is an internal conflict and must be managed as such, so that at the end, there would be no victor and no vanquished, but a stronger, more formidable and greater party.
GGO has shown an uncommon style of governance of Edo Okao (Edo first) in his reaching out to members of the other divides just now. It only points to a clear fact of N’Edo ghama, (Edo must get better), which is a mission that must be achieved, even with friends and foes. This Edo first must be a narrative that should remain, both in work and benefits, the state will get better and both those who labored for it and those in opposition should benefit from the betterment of Edo State in their own different ways.