Posted by Patrick Ochoga | 14 April 2019 | 1,394 times
It is no longer news that leaders of Edo State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) are divided along camps led by Governor Godwin Obaseki and the national chairman of the party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole. The division is over the second term bid of the incumbent governor in light of moves to ensure a new occupant in Osadebey’s avenue, the seat of power in the state. Even though, Obaseki and his predecessor have kept mute over the rumoured cold war between them, their supporters ahead of the 2020 battle for the governorship ticket continues to sound the political battle cry, fueling strong speculation that Oshiomhole may have severed ties with his successor. It was gathered that since it became clear that some top Abuja based Edo APC leaders are plotting to stop Obaseki, picking the party’s ticket, he has been building political structures across the state to checkmate his opponents within the party. As speculation over such a rift mounts, former deputy governor, Pius Odubu, former minister of Work, Dr Chris Ogiemwonyi, and Gen Charles Airhiavhere are being considered as likely replacement for Obaseki.
Former federal lawmakers, Hon Johnson Oghuma and Hon Gani Audu, are also said to be pencilled down to replace Obaseki’s deputy governor, Comrade Phillip Shaibu. Shaibu is from Etsako West local government area, a die-hard loyalist and political foot soldier of the national chairman. Fillers making around have it that he may have fallen out with his political godfather and now building structure for the Obaseki/Shaibu 2020 return bid against Oshiomhiole’s alleged plot. In an apparent show of solidifying their political synergy for the first time even though constitutional, Obaseki handed over power fully to his deputy, and proceeded on his annual vacation. Shaibu was said to have been imposed by Oshiomhole to checkmate Obaseki. LEADERSHIP Sunday investigation revealed that despite the fact that Obaseki has maintained his cool over the alleged underground plots to deny him return ticket, his foot soldiers insist that he must be allowed to complete his second term even as they caution against plots to impose a governor on the state. Further report indicate that Obaseki is quietly consolidating hold on the APC structure in the state which saw party leaders hitherto loyal to Oshiomhole shift loyalty to Obaseki.
•Excerpted from a LEADERSHIP Sunday piece.
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