Revisiting the Issues Around Edo 2024 Governorship Election: It is Edo First

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By Daniel A. Noah Osa-Ogbegie, Esq., PNM FCAI

As a critical stakeholder in the Edo project, I always feel a compelling need to lend my voice to the direction the Edo Nation should go per time. Last year, I came up with a four part essay that critically evaluated the coming governorship election and the Governor Edo needed . My positions were valid at the time and still valid today, but because of the vicissitudes of life, it is imperative for me to revisit some of my proposals , looking at where we are now, but as I said in my previous treatise, my loyalty will always remain with truth, correctness and Edo in that order. At the end, one would be satisfied that one has tried to goad society on the right path.

Asue Ighodalo

The major interest for Edo people generally was that the next Edo Governor must be Esan from Edo Central Senatorial district. Edo people are essentially one people by ethnic grouping through history, culture, language and eternal bond. We believe in fairness, equity, correctness and justice. This is why, I believe, Edo people on the streets of Benin City, Igara, Auchi, Uromi, Ehor etc, held the strong view that the next Edo Governor must be Esan.

 

Personally, I hold competence, character and personality over tribe and tongue. It matters to me not where anyone comes from if they can get the job done. How many of us would employ a bungling idiot because they are from our tribe and speak same language as us? So why do we fight naked to ensure the man from same village as us, etc, superintend over us as President or Governor?

Asue Ighodalo

Not to belabour the issue, I agree that the next Edo Governor should be from Edo Central to ensure the cord that bind Edo people for hundreds of years remain strong. Many people probably do not know that the ancient Benin Empire was supported to be great by all Edo tribes,including Esans, who also contributed soldiers to the Benin Army in furtherance of the course of extending the empire. So to ensure all Edo tribes feel part and parcel of the Edo project, it was essential the other Edo tribes conceded the 2024 Governorship to Esan at this time so we can be properly galvanised to face the future together.

 

Who is the one to lead us into this future? A prowl of leopards led by a sheep will meet a certain disastrous end. The next Edo Governor must be a man who shows he is prepared and would be ready to hit the ground running from the first day. We cannot afford to have a Governor that would be led by others. The Edo Governor must show that he knows where he is going by showing us where he is coming from and where he is today.

 

The next Governor of Edo State should be a man ( or woman) that commands respect across the State. He must be a person that is able to connect with the entire State and has broad knowledge of the various demographics making up the State.

 

In the midsts of the noise coming out from activities leading up to the next election in Edo State, what I find most numbing, annoying and insidious is the presentation of the APC ticket, having a serving senator as Governorship candidate and a serving member of the House of Reps as his deputy. They started their campaign for Governor just after their elections into the National Assembly, before they were inaugurated to represent their various constituent and district in the National Assembly. I find this totally disrespectful to members of their constituencies and District . The APC by this, are clearly showing that they have no focus and that they rate Edo people very low. This recklessness must be checked and Edo people must ask questions. You had barely spent two months as a Senator or a Member of the House of Representatives and you started distracting yourself with personal gubernatorial ambitions, when there is nothing the people can use to rate your performance as a legislator, just because you can throw money around, hire hatchet men and praise singers ? We must quickly take these people aside and tell them to stop insulting our collective intelligence with such brazeness.

 

What has the APC candidate, senator Monday Okpebholo done in the senate that should make Edo people reward him with the Governorship of the state? Many times, I see him fidgeting while trying to address basic questions. He is 52 but his hands shake while holding the microphone, his posture unstable, walking around the podium like a primary school pupil in a debate session, showing zero self confidence. What is even worse is his lack of cognition and understanding of even basic issues. A candidate for governorship of Edo state that did not know the difference between a museum and a zoo will be an embarrassment to Edo people; his government would be rudderless,leaving Edo people a lot poorer and disillusioned. How can he sit with foreign investors and negotiate on our behalf ? So to be Governor of Edo state, a candidate must show capacity and personality . He must show that he understands the issues and he is able to profer solutions in a cost effective manner.

TO BE CONTD

Ogbegie, a lawyer, community leader and public affairs analyst, wrote in from Benin City, Edo State.