Edo state Governor, Godwin Obaseki has debunked claims by a governorship aspirant of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Major General Charles Airhiavbere (rtd), that he is planning to dump the APC ahead of 2020 gubernatorial election in the state.
Reacting to the claims by Airhiavbere, the Special Adviser on Media and Communication Strategy Crusoe Osagie described it as a lie from pit of hell.
He said, “Governor Obaseki is firmly rooted in the party in the state, he has recorded 100 per cent in his political career, he is performing, he is the leader of the party, he controls the party so who will he leave the party for? That allegation is a complete lie from the pit of hell. Governor Godwin Obaseki has a very robust relationship with the presidency and his party at the centre. His party is the ruling party in the state and at the centre so where is he leaving to and why should he leave?
“The good records of Obaseki cannot be compared to that of Airhiavbere. Obaseki contested for election once and he won. Airhiavbere has been contesting and has always lost even when he was a candidate of another party in 2012, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole defeated him in the entire 18 local government areas of the state. He should be asked where he gets money to always contest elections.”
Airhiavbere had told journalists in Benin-City that the governor is plotting to leave the APC after he realised that achieving his second term ambition will be difficult on the platform of the party. He said Obaseki’s incompetence was the reason he fell out with his predecessor in office and the national chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole.
Airhiavbere said, “Since after the last presidential election, there has not been governance in Edo State and if we allow him, the opposition will take over. It has been all over the place that he has been trying to cross carpet, trying to look for soft landing but his main assets which are the APC leaders; he has left them in disarray.
“Are you not worried that in a state where you have 24 over 24 in the House of Assembly, there is division, are you not worried that in a state where the governor said he was endorsed by his immediate predecessor in office, he is having problems with him?
“The presidential election in February, gave an account of APC political instability in the state. During that election we lost in Edo South, we lost in Edo Central, only Edo North produced the percentage that was required for the president to scale through in Edo State and that was the beginning of the problems of the APC coming to the public.
“It became clear that if we don’t do something quick, there will be problem. Edo State has had the privilege of producing two chairmen, the founding father, that is Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and Comrade Oshiomhole, the two of them have been governors of this state so we the leaders of APC cannot afford to fold our arms and watch things go bad. When you know the strength of your enemy, you must go back to the drawing table and make sure that the enemy does not overrun you and that is exactly what the leaders of APC in Edo State are doing. Don’t forget that Edo State is the only APC state in the South-South and we cannot afford to lose it to the opposition.”