Obaseki Not Within Your Reach, Family Tells People Allegedly Threatening Gov’s Life

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Godwin Obaseki

• Edo youths caution House against taking over assembly

The Ogbeide-Oyo family in Edo State, which gave birth to the Obaseki family, has dared those issuing threats on the life of their son and Governor of Edo State, Mr Godwin Obaseki, declaring that the governor is not within their reach.

This is coming as a group, under the auspices of the Edo Youth Vanguard, has sounded a stern warning to the House of Representatives and the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to either be impartial in its intervention in the contrived impasse in the state House of Assembly or incur the wrath of the youth.

In a communique issued yesterday in Benin City and signed by the Chairman, Ogbeide-Oyo Voice Worldwide, Mr. Peter Owen Amadasun, and the Secretary, Mr. Oyuki Obaseki (Jnr.), the family said: “Those people that see themselves as destroyers of life; let it be known to you that our son is not within your reach.”

The family said: “Sadly, our attention has been drawn to the purported threat to the life of our son by some persons who are hell-bent on reversing the gains made under his able watch. We condemn this threat in its entirety.

“Therefore, we use this medium to inform well-meaning Nigerians and call on the security agencies to probe this threat and put it under rigorous investigative scrutiny with those involved questioned and if found culpable should be made to face criminal prosecutions no matter how highly placed”.

The family explained that their “clarion call is premised on the fact never a day passes without the usual solemn report of one form of criminality perpetrated on innocent Nigerians across the length and breadth of our beloved country. We must not wait until they execute their evil plot before the needful is done.”

The advised: “If anyone has any issues against him, we enjoin them to bring cogent and verifiable evidence to indict him rather than resorting to crude methods culminating in this odiousness.

“A man who has sacrificed his all for the development of our dear state should not be messed up on the altar of re-election and unnecessary show of force.”

They noted that: “The antecedent of the Ogbeide-Oyo Family in the history of Benin Kingdom is one to be relished and be proud of. In over a century we have contributed to the development of the state in particular and the country in general.

Meanwhile, a group, under the auspices of the Edo Youth Vanguard, has sounded a stern warning to the House of Representatives and the leadership of APC to either be impartial in its intervention in the contrived impasse in the state House of Assembly or incur the wrath of the youth.

In a statement issued in Benin, the state capital by its President, Nosakhare Oseghale, the group questioned especially the lower legislative arm’s ill-conceived directive, that the Governor, Obaseki, should issue a new proclamation to the assembly for proper constitution while directing the Inspector General of Police and the Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS), to shut down the assembly and provide adequate security to allay further fears of intimidation and threat as alleged by some members-elect.

He said: “We are surprised and shocked that the House of Representatives seems to have abdicated its primary responsibility to represent the common and collective interests of the citizens through the enactment of laws for the peace, order and good governance of the Federation among other equally important legislative duties.

“In a democracy, as practised in Nigeria, the legislature exists as an independent institution which deepens democracy and ultimately strengthens the polity. Shirking or abdicating these all-important responsibilities on the altar of parochial and partisan and political interests imperils democracy and that comes with devastating consequences.

“This is why the stance of the House of Representatives on the Edo State House of Assembly issue raises not only eyebrows, it calls for deeper scrutiny into what inspired the misguided decision. Who are their sponsors? Are they acting in our interest or the interest of their paymasters,” the group queried.

The EYV averred that Edo youths are not docile, adding that “We have just decided to maintain the peace and order in the state as encouraged and entrenched by Governor Obaseki but we are privy to the shenanigans of selfish and mindless Abuja political merchants and we shall not allow them to dictate to us who the leaders of our House of Assembly should be.

“Since when did the national party start interfering in the composition of the leadership of a state House of Assembly if not that there is a particular interest that needs to be served?”

The youth group claims that it was ironic that the House of Representatives acted in the manner it did, given that constitutionally, to make such order or any whatsoever on a state House of Assembly, there should be a joint resolution with the Senate and until then, any such directive is an exercise in illegality.

The group also pointed out that apart from the illegality, what the House of Representatives has done is sub-judice given that the parties involved in the crisis are aware that there are three legal suits on the matter while there’s a Federal High Court injunction in respect of one of the issues raised.

Indeed, according to the Solicitor-General of Edo State, Oluwole Iyamu (SAN), the Clerk of the House of Assembly instituted a case before the Federal High Court which has as defendants the National Working Committee of the APC, the Inspector General of Police and the Department of State Service (DSS). An injunction restraining the defendants was granted but which the HoR failed to appeal before issuing its directive. “Why didn’t the House of Reps committee take steps to vacate the Order before unilaterally issuing a directive,” the group asked.

Reacting to allegations that the crisis may have been stoked by the immediate past governor and incumbent National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, the group said it was not oblivious to the rumour, saying, “Is it not ironic that in a state where we have one party ruling, and that has all the 24 seats in the House of Assembly, we have this kind of a crisis?”

The group stated further that it is conscious of the fact that Governor Obaseki has given his predecessor all the respect and loyalty due him as “Oshiomhole’s interests are Obaseki’s interests except he has found new interests that are against the people of the state; the structure Oshiomhole put down in the state is still there, and we are also aware that nobody from the NWC of the party has called the governor to know what the problem is. So, as far as we are concerned, Governor Obaseki does not have a problem with his friend of over two decades.”

The group affirmed that it decided to raise the alarm to forestall a situation that can potentially set the state on fire and to avoid the Zamfara experience where all elected officials were sacked by the Supreme Court.

“Let it be clear that we have a performing governor that is widely loved by Edo State indigenes at home and abroad because of his sterling achievements in office. That he has refused to share the state’s money to political leaders should not make him a sacrificial lamb. If it is a war the party or any other meddlesome group wants, we are ready for them,” the group opined.