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Election: Why The Political Struggle For Control Of Edo Between Oshiomhole And Obaseki is Far From Being Over

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.

Godwin Obaseki: Governor, Edo state

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.

 

Stephen Ubanna

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