Edo 2020: Ogiemwonyi’s entrance and Obaseki’s exit…

Gov. Gowin Obaseki

… how Edo electorates are likely to vote

Indeed interesting times lies ahead towards the build-up to Edo State elections coming up later in the year.
As political fireworks are in motion so also is the bridge-building process taking place.

Recent development indicates that Obaseki has been given fresh demands to meet if at all he should be considered as an aspirant under the ruling party, APC.
The conditions it was learnt was just a requirement for Obaseki to be accepted into the APC once again as a member and not even a guarantee of getting the party’s ticket as APC has ruled on direct primaries in the conduct of its congress.
Obaseki to the surprise of the majority of APC members started a series of lobbying in order to secure the party’s ticket.Obaseki suddenly became his old self and was seen reaching out to aggrieved members.
However, the series of lobbying has met stiff resistance from the party and its leaders.
The conditions which were given to Obaseki to accept him back to the party seems insurmountable.
Without the fulfilment of these conditions, Obaseki would be ineligible to purchase the nomination form of intent to seek reelection under the APC.
Drop Philip Shaibu.

The first condition is Philip Shaibu should be dropped as the Deputy Governor.
For Obaseki to come to the negotiating table he must sacrifice his deputy.
Funny enough this was the same condition given to Obaseki if he was to be considered under the PDP canopy.
Drop the 18 local government chairmen.
Obaseki was told to drop the 18 local government chairmen and open up space for democratic representation. In the heat of the crisis between Adams Oshiomhole and the Governor, some local government chairmen were dropped over trumped-up charges. The local Government chairmen dropped were alleged not to be on the same page with Obaseki.
Issue a fresh proclamation in Edo State House Of Assembly.
The ruling party, APC has instructed Obaseki to issue a directive on a fresh proclamation for the EDHA if he has to be considered.
With the aforementioned conditions, it is evidently clear that Obaseki is on his way out of the APC, Obaseki would not even consider any of the conditions given above.
So this brings us to the major discussion of the day.
Who then would most likely emerge as the gubernatorial candidate of the APC ? and how likely the electorates are going to vote.
In its quest of having a perfect transition away from a post-Obaseki administration, the party has listed some basic prerequisite in selecting its candidate.
Experience, integrity, performance and above all loyalty to the party must be supreme.
Ogiemwonyi who seems to be the new bride of the APC would definitely have a running battle with Obaseki.

Ogiemwonyi who has the administrative experience laced with a record of performance seems set to battle Obaseki for the seat of the Executive Governor of Edo State.
How Edo electorates are likely to vote.
This year’s election would be decided on performance, integrity, commitment, tolerance and political liberation.
Edo people are one of the most sophisticated and knowledgeable electorates and would decide based on the aforementioned factors.
What is Obaseki’s performance as regards his promises?
How has Obaseki been able to meet up with the 200,000 jobs he promised?
What is the standard of jobs done in correlation with the amount of contract awarded?
How tolerant is Obaseki’s Government?
Why is Edo debt profile skyrocketing?
The sentimental card would be deployed in politicking as the election draws nearer but like I earlier stated Edo electorates would decipher between cosmetics projects and genuine commitments.
Obaseki would face tough opposition in Ogiemwonyi in comparison of performance and sincerity.
Ogiemwonyi seems to be coming into the race with an unblemished record.

Engineer Chris Ogiemwonyi began his career as a Petroleum Engineer II in 1975.
He rose through the ranks to finally become the Group Executive Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC, Exploration & Production Directorate) in 2007.
Throughout his career in the NNPC, Ogiemwonyi was never found wanting and was instrumental in laudable initiatives that boosted the capacity output of our petroleum industry, amongst which is the popular local content revolution.
Edo electorates will look beyond the rhetoric of comparing Oshiomhole’s performance with Obaseki’s performance and focus on the character of who is at the ballot box and not Oshiomhole that has done his eight years and it was asserted to be very positive hence the support in electing Godwin Obaseki.
Ogiemwonyi’s performance track record speaks volume and would determine a long way how Edo electorates would vote.
Indeed Edo State deserves better.

Osigwe Omo-Ikirodah Writes from Benin-Cty, Edo State

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