In a stunning turn of events, the ongoing conflict between the Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, and his Deputy, Rt. Hon. Philip Shaibu seems to be escalating into a full-blown crisis casting a dark shadow over the political landscape of the state.
The crisis has been simmering between the two leaders for a while but reached a crescendo when the governor accused his deputy of trying to stage a coup against him after the deputy secured an interlocutory injunct n restraining the governor, House of Assembly, the DSS, and others from initiating impeachment proceedings against him.
The governor through some of his supporters have also accused the deputy governor of being responsible for the crisis and failure of the PDP in the state in recent times.
Reacting to the crisis and allegations, a chieftain of the PDP in Edo North, Chief Moses Aimiomode noted that the crisis is the handiwork of those who feel that the deputy governor is the reason they’ve not benefited from a government they worked to enthrone.
Chief Aimiomode stated that the deputy governor is not the cause of the failure of PDP to win House of Assembly seats in Edo North., a situation he attributed to the absence of the legacy group (Dan Orbih, Pascal Ogbomeh, and others) and the influence of Comrade Adams Oshiomole who is loved by his people “Even the people of Edo South love Oshiomhole too” he stated. The Chieftain noted that these factors were responsible for the loss of seats in the House of Assembly election, coupled with the fact that some of the persons fueling the present crisis were among those who worked against the party in the last election but have now chosen to use the deputy governor as a scapegoat.
“Governor, even those you are appointing as commissioners today joined in voting against our party and ruining the chances of success but today you are empowering them within Edo North as against those who stood firm for the party alongside side your deputy” he noted.
The PDP chieftain noted that the exclusion of the deputy governor from Edo North PDP affairs will further affect the party negatively, especially as the state prepares for a major election in 2024. He noted that the deputy governor remains the only face of PDP in Edo North today and his exclusion will only be to the advantage of the APC which already has a strong presence in the area.
“Governor Obaseki should know by now that his deputy governor is an asset to him and the party. He is not a general that stays at home and commands his officers to go to war. He is a general that stays in front and leads his soldiers to the battleground. Even if you don’t want him to succeed you in office as most governors in the southern part of the country are, there are ways you can cleverly frustrate his efforts without embarrassing him”
He reminded the governor of how his deputy played a great role to ensure his political survival when Comrade Oshiomhole planned to humiliate him. He noted that in doing this, the deputy governor offended his kinsman, Adams Oshiomhole while ensuring that the governor is saved from being disgraced.
He called on the governor and his supporters to listen to the voice of well-meaning Nigerians who have called on them to embrace dialogue as a way out of the present crisis with his deputy, who has always seen him as an elder brother.
Chief Aimiomode said that those drumming and clapping for the crisis were not doing so in the interest of the governor or his deputy, nor for the PDP and the state but are actively doing so as a preparation for the eventual takeover of the state by the APC.