For Mr. Godwin Obaseki, governor of Edo State, reprieve is still a long way. The reason is not far-fetched: The APC national Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomole has made up his mind not to cede the party ticket to him—and this is final. And although President Muhammad Buhari has ordered that he be allowed to context for second term in office, political observers believe no one is deceived. If his body language is anything to go by, Obaseki’s days in office may be numbered-unless he resorts to Yahaya Bello’s tactics.
Besides, the game plan by Adams Oshiomole to appoint a ‘stooge” APC State Chairman, in the person of Mr. David Imoise, the decampment of PDP Stalwarts to APC and the impending plot to deploy “Abuja Federal Might” during the primary plus INEC’s legendary double face, then you can see clearly the handwriting. “Do you think Obaseki stand a chance if they bring 40-50,000 policemen to monitor the elections? asked an anonymous source. Political pundits believe that Oshiomole will yet produce a dark horse to unseat Obaseki.
The report added that although the venerable Oba of Benin has waded in and ordered prominent Benin sons – Capt. Hosa Okunbor and Chief Chris Ogiewonyi not to contest against Obaseki, observers insist that few will listen.
But at the moment, Mr. Godwin Obaseki has grassroots support, and his performance is counting for him and there is the need for Adams Oshiomole to be wary of the Zamfara treatment. ‘You can’t ride roughshod over a sitting governor just like that”, said a youth leader in Etsako West LGA; “you will certainly have your fingers burnt”, he insisted.
Knowing what lies ahead of him, Mr. Obaseki is not leaving any stone unturned; he has set in motion to put together the delegates for the primary and anyone who is not in support of his ambition or perceived to be close to Oshiomole is automatically given the boot. “That’s how determined Obaseki is and who can blame him?” questioned an interested party. “He, Obaseki knows too well that a defeat will see him in political limbo and if possible arrest and intimidation by EFCC”, he added.
Meanwhile the duplicate “APC” State Chairman in the person of Col Imoise was reportedly locked out at the crucial Abuja meeting where the President was in attendance. He was said to have been given the cold shoulders and driven far from the premises.