May 29, 2024

PDP Must Stop Falsehood as Desperate Tactics to Handover Edo State to Failed and Expired Political Godfathers and Their Godson

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APC Guber Candidate, Senator Monday Okpebholo

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By Comrade Orobosa Omo-Ojo JP

I read with amusement, the conjured write up by Mr. Christopher Nehikhare, Commissioner for Communication and Orientation in his attempt to fault a well received thank you message by Senator Monday Okpebholo, the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate for the September 21, governorship election in Edo State.

Going through the unreasonable bla bla bla talk, it is difficult to figure out the message Nehikhare tried to pass. But one can glean together that the import of his story is to paint the APC Candidate as a political godson to Nehikhare’s imaginary godfathers.

The fallibility and deceptive intention of the write up is very obvious and clear. Nehikhare conjured his claim that the APC’s interest is to return the godfathers and starve Edo people of development. 

He sermonized how he watched “with disdain and utmost disappointment the embarrassing outing of Senator Monday Okpebholo, the camera-shy and ineloquent candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) wherein he promised to release the state’s resources to political leaders in exchange for their support to clinch the governorship seat.”

Nehikhare also went on to ascribe to Sen. Okpebholo, his make-believe statement that he would end the “suffering of political leaders under Godwin Obaseki, by granting them unfettered access to the people’s purse, while neglecting the state’s development and short-changing the majority of Edo people.”

Before I respond to the appropriateness of the true statement made by the APC candidate, Senator Okpebholo, it is important for the benefit of readers and Edo people in particular, to reproduce here what Okpebholo said, using Nehikare’s transcription. 

Nehikhare quoted Senator Okpebholo thus: “Whenever I talk to myself, I say to myself, I find myself in the circle of leadership. People think it is only Chief Anenih I was close to. No, I was close to Solomon Lar. I grew up in Jos. I saw how leaders suffered after putting someone in an office just like what we are suffering here. 

“Okah, you’re suffering it in the hands of Obaseki. This will not repeat itself in my time because this is something that I see with leaders. By the time they go inside their bedrooms, they start crying. They have suffered, they have worked, we have done everything to make sure this person is there and he has forgotten us.

“I want to tell you one small story. When who becomes the Senate President was very hot, some people said, come here, come here and I said no, my leader is not around. Who is your leader and I said it is Adams Oshiomhole. When he comes he will tell me the direction to go. 

“Now, what happened? When he came, I followed his foot step. I followed him and he took me to where I should go.”

Going through Nehikhare’s roguish transcription of Senator Okpebholo’s thank you message to leaders of APC, it is clear that Nehikhare has criminally concocted and doctored same to gain cheap milage for Obaseki’s political godson unachievable project to take over as governor from Nigeria’s No.1 political ‘Ogbomwanyese’. 

Chris Nehikhare and I have severally lamented the blind political tactics that his boss, and my friend, Obaseki has deployed in Edo State since assuming office in 2016.

We have both expressed our frustrations about his decision to waste government resources to pursue vendetta missions all in his quest to assume unachievable godfather position in our dear state. 

We have also at different occasions, lamented Obaseki’s attraction to things that will relegate our treasured traditional institution. We have frowned at the lack of cohesiveness in the running of Obaseki’s government.

It is then very laughable to see Nehikhare, pointing fingers at Senator Monday Okpebholo as one that will fritter away Edo State resources when he assumes office as ‘Servant Governor’. 

The indices so far shows the person that is already indebted to some outdated, wasted and consistently failed godfathers who are only administering ‘life-support’ to Mr. Asue Ighodalo, the parallel Peoples Democratic Party candidate, is most likely to hand over the state’s resources to godfathers.

Edo people are already aware of the humongous state resources the godfather and his godson, Asue Ighodalo have wasted so far, including the alleged $2m they used in buying the worthless PDP ticket. 

Even as I pen this response, ‘PDP marshals’ are running round nooks and crannies with nap sack bags working hard to compromise voters who have made up their minds to take back their state from an aspiring godfather who they accuse of privatizing their state. 

The rethorical list of achievements by the fast winding down Obaseki’s administration exposes Nehikare’s frustration in working for a governor that has abandoned the people after they helped to save him from political disgrace in 2020.

I say this because I am aware that the good people of Evbueghare Community in Orhionmwon Local Government Area, where Christopher Nehikhare halls from, have declared him persona non grata due to lack of government presence in the area. 

I challenge Nehikhare to list the physical infrastructure he claimed Obaseki has upgraded (completed or ongoing in the State). 

This administration should bury its head in disappointing shame for applauding itself for recircled eight years projects which Nehikhare listed to include: “High Court Complex, to the newly built Adams Oshiomhole Labour House, to the State Secretariat Complex, to the Edo Agricultural Hub, to the Edo Education Hub; Iyaro, to the Edo State College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Iguoriakhi, to the Edo State Colleges of Education campuses in Abudu, Igueben and Afuze.” 

Nehikhare disturbingly added the investment in road infrastructure which he scored at 700km of roads for eight years. How miserable can our expectations from a government that has an overhang of almost N1trillion in local and foreign debt. Nehikhare and his boss must think that we are all ‘mumu’ in Edo State.

The achievements Nehikare also claimed that the PDP government made in the areas of tourism, education and agriculture will be responded to in due time.

In conclusion, let me say that, by the vantage positions and roles that I have played, Edo State needed a break from ‘PowerPoint’ and ‘MoU’ governance, to a more realistic, all encompassing government by the people, for the people.

We need a more humane servant-governor that will respect all the components that have held Edo as a formidable state, not one godson that has learnt the ostentatious standards and failed promises technicalities.

Edo people are tired of a combative governor who will spend more resources to divide our cherished traditional institutions. We need a governor that will not pay lip service to the education of our children, more importantly, we need a governor that will not spend eight years to build one standard hospital.

Finally, we need a governor that will not demolish the Specialist Hospital built by Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, like Obaseki did to Central hospital, and gifted the land to his friend to build a private museum.

If I may ask, ‘who do us like this?’

Akwa Ibom State Governor, Pastor Umo Bassey Eno, has just inaugurated an additional Airbus 220 – 300 aircraft in the fleet of Ibom Air, yet Nehikhare is celebrating 700 kilometers patch-patch road after collecting $150million for flood control. We nor go gree!

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Comrade Orobosa Omo-Ojo JP, Former Commissioner and Special Adviser to Edo State Government, writes from Benin City, Edo State

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