Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has reacted to a verbal attack against him by the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, on Channels TV over the weekend.
Mr Oshiomhole, after he received some defectors from the opposition PDP in Edo State, into the APC, said he never taught Mr Obaseki and his deputy, Philip Shaibu, their violent approach to political matters in the state “as they often claim”.
He also added that he never taught the duo ‘the art of losing’. Mr Obaseki lost both his federal constituency and senatorial district to the main opposition, PDP, in the last general elections.
“I have read them on several occasions saying that I taught them all they are doing today. This is laughable because I never thought them how to lose elections. As we speak today, the governor (Obaseki) lost his ward, local government and senatorial district in the last presidential election. As we speak, the governor is being represented by the PDP in his Federal constituency and senatorial district. These in my view were early morning signals about need to change tactics., stop threatening people, saying you will crush, who are you crushing?” Mr Oshiomhole said in his statement on Sunday.
However, Mr Obaseki accused his estranged political mentor of winning elections through the use of thugs and violence.
The governor in his reaction sent to Daily Post by his spokesperson, Crusoe Osagie, on Monday, said the APC National Chairman “is attacking them (him and his deputy) because they never succumb to his godfatherism agenda in the state.”
Meanwhile, Mr Shaibu had claimed on different occasions that Mr Oshiomhole taught them his “no more godfatherism and let the people lead” mantra, “which is the pattern they are following in the governance of the state.”
But Mr Obaseki, who has been having pitched battles with his predecessor, apparently feels otherwise.
“Even his allegory of politics being like a forest with dangerous animals is a poor excuse to continue to perpetuate thuggery and the keep the collective patrimony under the control of a few greedy and violent people in the name of winning units and ward elections.
“Good governance remains the surest path towards winning elections especially when you are committed to free and fair and credible elections devoid of the kind of violence witnessed in recent elections in the country.
“So instead of trying to pacify the violent and the lawless just because you want to win elections, Oshiomhole should support the stellar performance being displayed by Governor Godwin Obaseki in Edo State, that way, he will not need the services of his thugs to win the next election.” Mr Obaseki’s spokesperson fired back at the former labour leader.