Godwin Obaseki

I am happy that Godwin Obaseki won the gubernatorial election in Edo State not so much because he is going to provide any outstanding leadership for the people of Edo State. After all, the average politician in Nigeria is in politics for self, not to help the needy and, not for mission but because he cooked Adams Oshiomhole’s goose. It was time someone did so.

Here is a former governor who does not know the importance of mission, transparency and how to give people the latitude to express selves. Small wonder, he failed as a national party chairman. He talks too much in his element instead of listening too much. People who talk too much are most times only interested in status symbols, they give a lower profile to the attributes of other people, they expect little from people instead of so much and they get little result, they do not believe in the wisdom of the crowds in an era of diversity.

What is missing as a result of this shenanigan is the absence of the pursuit of objectives and key results to develop polity.

Oshiomhole enjoys breathing down people’s neck, very proficient at “shape up or ship out” conversation, but does not help people grow. Where then is the beauty of democracy if nonconforming views are not celebrated? For Oshiomhole, views that are not agreeable should either be thrown to Hell or high water. There is something called, “compassionate pragmatism,” and it allows people to come with their own solutions and solve their own problems.

Oshiomhole loves to tell people what to do, but not to encourage and listen to supporters. It was embarrassing for me to see him campaign for Osagie Ize-Iyamu whom he had years ago fobbed off with condescension. His presence on Ize- Iyamu’s campaign entourage became the encumbrance of Ize-Iyamu.

Iyamu so politically ham-fisted forgot that in politics when the sums of people’s faults outweigh their plus-point, they become a liability. He should have known that Oshiomhole was a liability. Al Gore knew that Bill Clinton was a burden because of the Monica Lewinsky affair and did not include him in his campaign train for president of the United States.

How some people attempt to rewrite history in Nigeria even with historical records in the public space beggars’ belief. What do they tell their children about principles, values and character? If character changes with changing circumstances, what would people be remembered for? What is Oshiomhole’s story? I know Gani Fawehinmi’s, Wole Soyinka’s, Femi Falana’s stories.
I am happy that the hubris of the former governor met its poetic nemesis.

Now that the people of Edo State have shown that he is no longer politically relevant, he needs to create a new bubble for himself and live in it. No need parading himself as a leviathan with the empty bubble of the old. Nigeria only offered him a platform for political patronage. He does not understand the workings of politics like the man in Lagos.

Who will undo the Gordian knot in Edo? When my mother is angry she mutters nonsense in the Igala language, “ugba kocho.”

Obaseki won the election because the people of Edo came all out against Oshiomhole and not against Ize-Iyamu. Purposeful politics requires that you approach people with sensitivity.

Oshiomhole’s arrogance led to his fall.

Simon Abah, Abuja