Governor Godwin Obaseki yesterday stated that he places a premium on the interest of Edo people and loathes godfatherism, noting that the phenomenon deprives the citizenry of their democratic rights. Maintaining that this remains his pact with the people, he regretted that his predecessor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, who initiated the fight that he was furthering, had “reneged on the mandate.”
The governor, who spoke while hosting ward leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Oredo Local Council of the state, implored his visitors to keep supporting him as he sustains the war against the menace. He said: “Comrade Oshiomhole came to me, asking that we join forces to fight and bring an end to the practice of godfatherism in the state. The partnership helped us in changing the narrative of development in the state. This led me into politics. I am into politics to better the lives of Edo people. We believed Oshiomhole and followed him to fight godfatherism.”
Obaseki added: He (Oshiomhole) said godfatherism is not good, but today he is saying godfatherism is good. He (Oshiomhole) said let the people lead, but today he wants to lead the people against their interest.”
Restating that he would always stand with the people, the governor noted: “Any politics that doesn’t benefit the majority of the people is bad politics. The resources we have in the state are to be used for the benefits of the people of Edo State, not a few politicians.”He urged the party faithful and supporters to be calm, as “no man is God”, adding: “When they say I am a mosquito, I was never worried; I told them that mosquitoes can bite. The bite can cause malaria, and if not well treated, it can kill someone. Those bitten are already on life support but we pray they don’t die.”Obaseki wondered “what antics and strategy would be deployed to make the minority decision supersedes that of the majority in a democratic system.”
“The last time an incumbent ran for the governorship (seat) on our party in the state, it was via consensus. It will happen again; we will all agree on consensus. Whether direct or indirect primary, you, the people, will vote. Our plan is on the election, not the primaries,” he asserted.
The governor pointed out that with the resources available in the state, the people have no business being poor, stating that the “bad leadership style adopted in the past was responsible for the poverty (in the land).”“Our people have no business being poor but our leadership has brought us here. I am in politics to improve the life of Edo people. We have done more in three years with less resources. Imagine what will happen in eight years.
Obaseki went on: “I am not trained to abuse elders or my seniors. But we will not allow anything that will negatively affect Edo people. I will fight with everything to make life better for my people. God has continued to fight for us. All the strategies and antics against this government have failed. We will build this party, and you will be the envy of others who are not in our party. But, we are sure they will join us soon.”
State APC chairman, Anslem Ojezua, urged the ward leaders to support their son, insisting that no governor in Edo has supported the party as Obaseki had done in the last three years.“I urge you to support your son and never allow anyone to treat him anyhow. Possess your possession!” he pleaded.