By Bolaji Ogundele
Abuja (Precise Post) – The Edo State Working Committee (SWC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has suspended the governor of state, Mr Godwin Obaseki, and his deputy, Comrade Philip Shaibu, from the party over alleged anti-party activities.
Disclosing this at a press briefing held in Abuja on Wednesday, the Chairman and Secretary of the Edo State chapter of the APC, Col. David Imuse (Rtd.), and Lawrence Okah, respectively, said the decision to suspend the governor and his leadership team, comprising his deputy, Shaibu, and Secretary to the State Government, Osarodion Ogie, was borne out of the need to protect the party from destruction.
The party’s SWC also passed a vote of confidence on the National Chairman of the party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, as well as the secretary of the party in the state, Okah, both of whom had earlier been announced suspended by the faction of the party, led by the recently removed Chairman of the party, Anselm Ojezua.
According to the party, crisis rocking the party in the state had resulted from alleged unguarded activities and inflammatory comments of the former party Chairman, Ojezua, as well as the pursuit of Governor Obaseki’s second term bid.
It also faulted the reported suspension of the party’s National Chairman, Oshiomhole, describing it as absurd as it is not the place of a lower office to suspend occupiers of a higher one, describing the suspension as void and of no effect.
“There is clear and unambiguous evidence by the admission of the Governor himself that he actively supported and worked with opposition candidate in areas where his favoured aspirants did not pick the party ticket. This pattern of anti-party activities led to widespread electoral loses in Edo South Senatorial District including the Ward and Local Government of the Governor where we lost.
“In the desperate bid of Mr. Obaseki to suppress all forms perceived opposition and in his determination that no credible opposition emerges in the forthcoming primaries, elected council officials are indiscriminately removed from office with impunity.
“Jarret Tenebe and Daniel Asekhame both of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were recently quoted in news publication in several national dailies that the Governor in collaboration with the former Chairman Anselm Ojezua entered into financial dealings with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the tune of N6 billion with a view to undermining the electoral value of All Progressives Congress (APC) preparatory to his defection.
“The chronicles of events are geared towards weakening and eventual destruction of All Progressives Congress (APC) and intended to truncate our ability to win the forthcoming gubernatorial election.
“In light of the foregoing, it has become obvious that Mr. Obaseki has become a liability to the All Progressives Congress (APC). We cannot longer fold our arms and watch him drag our collective political fortunes into the abyss in his desperate bid to destroy the Party. The only option is to protect the interest of all stakeholders who have labored assiduously to build up the Party.
“Consequently, we hereby pass a vote of no-confidence on Mr. Godwin Nogheghase Obaseko and his leadershlp team comprising Hon. Phillip Shaibu (Dep. Governor) and Osarodion Ogie (Secretary to Government) and they are hereby suspended from the Party”, the party said.
The party leaders also raised the alarm over alleged threats to their lives, calling on the Inspector-General of Police to take necessary steps to secure their lives.
“Finally, we Wish to use this medium to put the Inspector General of Police and other security agencies on notice that members of the State Working Committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Edo State were harassed and hounded out of Benin City following the vote of no confidence passed on Anselm Ojezua. Thugs and hoodlums were mobilized to our houses in the dead of the night, and some others were stationed at strategic locations including the Benin Airport.
“We urge the Inspector General of Police to take necessary steps to protect our lives and property that are now at risk following th threats that followed our patriotic action to savage the image an
future of our Party”, the party said.