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Buhari meets Fayemi, Bagudu as Obaseki, Oshiomhole rift deepens

By Adamu Abuh (Abuja) and Michael Egbejule (Benin)
24 December 2019   |   4:27 am
President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday met behind closed doors with the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF), Kayode Fayemi, as well as the Chairman of the Progressives Governors’ Forum, Atiku Bagudu.

Muhammadu Buhari

•Edo CAN urges leaders to sheathe swords
•Okechukwu flays ex-gov’s leadership of APC

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday met behind closed doors with the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF), Kayode Fayemi, as well as the Chairman of the Progressives Governors’ Forum, Atiku Bagudu.

According to a report by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the president met separately with the two governors, first with Fayemi, at his office. He later met with Bagudu, who was accompanied by his Jigawa State counterpart, Abubakar Badaru. Though the agendas of the two meetings were not disclosed to newsmen at press time, observers said they might not be unconnected with the festering faceoff between Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State and his predecessor and National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole.

Meanwhile, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Edo has urged Obaseki and Oshiomhole to sheathe their swords and embrace peace in the interest of the advancement of the state and the Christian faith they profess.The Edo chairman of CAN, Dr. Oriname Oyonnude Kure, while briefing newsmen in Benin City on the faceoff between the two leaders, said the body of Christ was not oblivious of the rift.

Kure, who called for ceasefire, advised Obaseki and Oshiomhole not to allow some individuals soil the good names and legacies they had enshrined on the chronicles of achievers and builders of Edo land.

“We humbly appeal to Oshiomhole, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ for the sake of the destiny of the state which he laboured tirelessly for, day and night for eight years with the totality of his being, to kindly put aside whatsoever may have caused the imbroglio between him and his brother, Obaseki, so that the foundation and uncommon impact that his (Oshiomhole) administration has made in Edo land, which has made him become a hero, will not be destroyed,” Kure said.

He enjoined Oshiomhole to support Obaseki, noting that Obaseki also supported his administration for eight years by putting his party’s machinery together to the best of his ability within the limit of the law to bring the Edo State APC together for its unity in the interest of peace.Kure said: “With the uncommon impact the Obaseki’s administration has made in the state developmentally and in every ramification within the very short time, Edo people are very pleased with the governor and reposed their confidence in him for a second term in office.

“We pray that as Oshiomhole listens to the heart cry and plea of the church and the good people of Edo State, may God Almighty bless him. We appeal to him to let this matter amicably come to end in the interest of the peace of the state and his love for Edo people and the brotherly love that will forever remain unbridled between him and Obaseki after the game of politics is over.”CAN condemned the spate of violence in the wake of the APC crisis in the state and appealed to supporters of Oshiomhole and Obaseki to guide against future occurrence.

The Director General or the Voice of Nigeria (VON), Mr. Osita Okechukwu, insisted that Oshiomhole lacked the capacity to administer the APC.Speaking to reporters covering the activities of the APC at a forum in Abuja, Okechukwu pointed at the crises rocking the party across the country to justify his assertion.

Okechukwu, who was among chieftains of the party that had their suspension lifted by the Oshiomhole-led National Working Committee (NWC) of the party last week, said it beat his imagination that the national chairman allegedly couldn’t manage his relationship with the Edo State Deputy Governor, Mr. Philip Shauibu.

“I am not Shuaibu, Shaibu is his own making. If he was smart, he could have separated Shuaibu from Obaseki. He can stop Obaseki, I am not saying he can’t, but luckily, the leadership has also reasoned with some of us that were not stupid in shooting like a bull in the China shop,” the VON boss said.Okechukwu blamed Oshiomhole’s indiscretion for his unsuccessful bid for the Enugu West senatorial district seat in the 2019 poll.