Edo guber poll: Recluse yourself from APC primaries, Obaseki tells Oshiomhole
Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo state has asked the national chairman of the ruling All progressive Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole to recluse himself from the conduct of the party primaries billed to hold 22nd of this month.
Fielding questions from reporters after submitting his expression of interest and nomination forms, he maintained that the call was aimed at ensuring a level playing field for all aspirants for the governorship race.
Reiterating his commitment to the pursuit of peace and harmony among the ranks of the party in the state expressed preference for the use of the indirect mode of primaries to determine the flag bearer of the party.
Faulting reports in a section of the media that he is on the verge of defecting to the opposition people’s democratic party (PDP) to seek re-election, he said it would be uncharitable and unfair for some party chieftains in Edo state to accused him of betraying Oshiomhole.
According to him: “I am using this opportunity to call on Comrade Oshiomhole to recluse himself from the Edo nomination process because he is an interest party. It is against natural justice for a man to be a judge in his own case. So I think the honourable thing to do is to recluse himself and lets have a free process and lets reconcile and build our party.”
Continuing, he noted: “It is very absurd to say I want to contest on the PDP platform . I am someone that is very exposed. How can I collect from two parties when we have court rulings in past disqualifying people on that. I am a party man to the core. APC is my party because I come from a progressive political family.
“I believe in the ideals of APC, I believe in our President, I believe in what he stands for so I am a party man to the core. I am not an old styed politician. I represent a new direction of politics that is based on facts and truth not lies.”
On his relationship with Oshiomhole, he said: “In life everybody get helped, everybody get assisted. The person talked about he had no money when he left labour to contest. We knew what we did to make him Governor. I sacrificed eight years of my life probono, I collected to no Kobo to serve him in Edo.
“Today we know what we have built because of where we started from. So when you talk of betrayal, the biggest betrayal can be when people betray a cause, when they betray an idea. That is the greatest betrayal of all. It is like betraying God.
“When you said to God, this is what I stand for and then God gives you power then you turn around and do the exact opposite. There is no greater betrayal than that. So when you talk about betrayal let us be very clear. I want to put it on record that I am grateful, he assisted me just as I assisted him. I know the sacrifices we made to make him National Chairman. So what are we talking about?”
On the rationale for his visit to the national leaders of the party in the mould of President Muhammadu Buhari and Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu, he said: “The reason why I went to see our National Leader is that I don’t want the party turn apart. I am a man of peace.
For me and my colleague governors we cannot see a party we built destroyed, we cannot see a ruling party be so weakened and whatever it will take to secure peace, to secure harmony in the party, we are prepared to, I am prepared to make.
‘That is why I joined my colleagues to go and see the leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu to assure him that we are all working for the same course, we are all working to build our party. From 26 States, we are now 20. We don’t want to lose anymore state, there is really no reason to. We should all drop our egos and work for our party and the unity of our country.”