Taiwo Akerele, the chief of staff to Governor Godwin Obaseki, has resigned.
Mr Akerele tendered his resignation letter to Mr Obaseki on Friday, a source who is conversant with the development told PREMIUM TIMES, Saturday.
Mr Akerele is said to be unhappy and frustrated with the lingering feud between the governor and the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole.
The former chief of staff in a text message to PREMIUM TIMES, Saturday afternoon, confirmed he had resigned from Mr Obaseki’s administration. He said his decision was based on “administrative and governance grounds”.
He, however, said he still supported the governor’s “quest to transform” Edo state.
Mr Obaseki has denied receiving Mr Akerele’s resignation letter.
“In the past few hours, it emerged on social media that the Chief of Staff, Mr. Taiwo Akerele, has resigned his appointment with the Edo State Government,” Governor Obaseki’s spokesperson, Crusoe Osagie, said in a statement on Saturday.
“While the governor has not received any formal communication to this effect, he believes that this is a personal decision of Mr. Akerele. However, whenever the resignation letter gets to the governor, he would accept it, and he wishes Akerele all the best in his future endeavours.”
The source who did not want his name mention in the story said Mr Akerele, before his resignation, had made several attempts to broker peace between Mr Obaseki and Mr Oshiomhole.
“He (Akerele) has always wanted peace and a peaceful resolution of all the crises in the party (APC). He knew that as chief of staff, it was his duty to make friends for his boss and he tried to do that.”
The source said Mr Akerele personally handed his resignation letter to Governor Obaseki.
“But you know as typical of the bourgeoisie, they don’t want people to always beat them to the game. Imagine the master-servant relationship where you know that this servant has been complaining and all of a sudden you see a resignation letter from your servant, the first thing that comes to you is ‘Oh, this guy wants to take the shine off me!’
“They always want to be the one winning but it doesn’t always work that way.
“When he tendered his resignation letter to the governor, the governor asked him why are you doing this. He gave his reason, the governor tore the letter and told him he should go and let it die that way and nobody should hear about it.”
Some commissioners were said to have visited Mr Akerele in his house on Friday to put pressure on him to reconsider his action but he remained adamant.
Mr Oshiomhole, a former governor of Edo state, helped Mr Obaseki to succeed him as governor. Both leaders have fallen apart since and have been engaged in a protracted political battle that has factionalised the APC in Edo and also crippled the Edo State House of Assembly.
Mr Oshiomhole was almost removed as the APC national chairman recently, partly because of the party crisis in Edo state.