By Stephen Ubanna
The quarrel between Adams Oshimhole , a former governor of Edo state and now National Chairman of the All Progressive Congress, APC, and Godwin Obaseki, governor of Edo state and his one –time Political ally appears to have taken a turn for the worse as the APC , Chairman, had succeeded in frustrating his godson from realising his 2020, re-election bid.
Oshiomhole may have started the trouble for the embattled Edo state governor, who was disqualified by the Screening Committee from contesting the party primaries on the ground that ’’ here are discrepancies in his academic credentials’’. He was said to have also accused the governor of abuse of office.
The question on the lips was why has it suddenly dawned on the former Labour activist and the APC, National Chairman, that Obaseki, had discrepancies in his credentials when he had worked with him between 2007 and 2015, as the Chairman of the state Economic and Strategic Team, EST, and he did not find his Certificate s faulty.
The argument in political circles was that when he nominated him as the party flag bearer in the 2015, governorship election, there was nothing wrong with his academic credentials which qualified him to contest the party primaries and win.
Many believe that his academic credentials may have developed a K-leg because of their strained relationship because of the governor’s refusal to be controlled from Abuja, in running the affairs of the state by the APC, National Chairman, from Abuja.
political Observers believe that the former Edo ‘state governor’s claim that Obaseki has discrepancies in his accadmic credentials was an after- thought to justify his premeditated plan to scuttle his re-election bid. They noted that that the APC, National Chairman’s claim was an indictment on himself and the party to appoint a party member with discrepancies in his academic Credentials to work with his government
Not many were surprised that he could pick holes on his certificates, when he could declare declare publicly that any suspected people’s Democratic Party, PDPD, member who decamps to the APC is a saint. .
But going by his personal details of the Edo state governor, he was said to have he attended University of Ibadan , Oyo state , which the University Authorities , had confirmed and the New York State Columbia University and Pace University , for his post-graduate studies in the North American country of the United States.
Recall that Obaseki form the onset of his Administration had a working agreement with Oshiomhole which informed why he never contemplated of probing his eight year-rule of the state despite the discrepancies in the books and allegations of voting money for projects that were never executed but completed by his Adminstration. Oshiomhole, according to party sources, fears, that if Obaseki should be reelected , going by their starined relationship , he will be forced to probe him by his aides and he did not want that to happen .
Dsaigboovo Iyoha, the Political Adviser to Obaseki, the Edo state governor may have carpeted Oshiomhole over his claims that there are discrepancies in the governor’s academic credentials which led to his disqualification by the Screening Committee. Iyoha disclosed that the governor was disqualified by the Committee because of Oshiomhole’s Camp’s plan to rig the primaries which was uncovered .
According to him, the APC , National Chairman, and his group have results that had already been prepared for the direct primary canvassed by him but it got leaked, which he did not find funny. The Obaseki Political Adviser who could not hide his feelings noted that since the direct primaries was out of it because the result compiled by the group have been leaked from their own stables , they have no option but to pick holes in Obaseki’s Certificate in order to have an excuse of of disqualifying him from contesting the party primaries.
Note that Oshiomhole , the APC, Natiional Chairman,had sent a signal to Obaseki , that the game is over when he master-minded a mock primary of the party where Osagie Ize-Iyamu, a Clergy man and a former governorship Candidate of the Opposition PDP, in the , emerged as the Consensus Candidate. He may have known that if Obaseki was allowed to contest the Party primaries, his plan of imposing Ize-Iyamu, as the party governorship Candidate in the Septemeber 19, 2020 election will fail.
He has to go back to the drawing board with his group to device a way of frustrating Obaseki out of the race which he succeeded in doing by hand-picking a screening Committee which was said to have acted out on the script of the party National Working Committee, NWC, under his close watch. His pan worked out.
Prior to the party primaries, the katsina state born Nigerian President was said to have assured governor Obaseki who had visted him at the Presidential Villa, that he will wade into the crisis between him and his Oshiomhole but he never kept to his promise. He may have allowed what happened in Lagos state where Bola Ahmed Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos state and the party National leader, scuttled the re-election bid of his go son, in the 19191, governorship election in the state to repeat itself in Edo State by refusing to call Oshiomhole to order.
Iyoha, an arch supporter of Obaseki, may have sent a signal to Oshiomhole, the APC, National Chairman, to be ready for them as they are fully prepared for the September 19, 2020, governorship election in the state. This is an indication that the embattled Edo state governor may decamp to the PDP, to realize his political ambition.
Last Saturday, the Edo state governor, was said to have visited Nyensom Wike, the PDP, governor of Rivers state. The duo were said to have held a closed door meeting. The visit to Wike , was said to have been quickly followed on Sunday , June 14, 2020, with a visit to Udom Emmanuel, governor of Akwa Ibom, home state, of Godswill Akpbabio, minister of Niger State.
Political analysts believe that the Obaseki’s visits s to the two oil-rich states’ governors in the Niger Delta region, may not be unconnected with his plan to defect to the PDP, to pick the party governorship nomination From for the September 19, election in the state.
Obaseki , according to APC, sources, wants the governors who are very influential in the opposition PDP, to soften the ground for him by working on the Uche Secondus, led NWC, of the Party in order to pick te party nomination Form since Ize-Iyamu had taken his place in the APC.
Obaseki is optimistic that if he should pick the party nomination Form, he will beat Ize-Iyamu, the APC, Candidate, who he had beaten before , both at the APC , Primaries and at the 2016 , governorship election of the state, as the PDP Candidate.