In the past twelve months, governance has been on recess in Edo State. No thanks to the power tussles between Adams Oshiomhole, the national Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC and the State Governor, Godwin Obaseki. Insiders maintain that the faceoff centres on political test of will.
While Oshiomhole, according to insider, intends to maintain his film grip on the party, Obaseki, feels differently, maintaining that as a state governor, he should have the final say on what goes on in the state. However, this comes to Oshimohole as an affront given the energy and resources he deployed to ensuring Obaseki became the governor in 2016. To him, nothing short of absolute loyalty is required of Obaseki who he currently sees as “ingrate.”
Just yesterday, December 12, 2019, the state of joblessness came into international fore when tension rose as hundreds of youths believed to be members of the Edo State Chapter of the All Progressive Congress (APC), set bonfires at several spots on the two sides of the busy Airport Road in Benin.
The angry youths blocked several places on the road, including Vegetable Market junction, Airport entry gate. They also set burn-fires around Golf Course, Akenzua junction and along Akenzua Road in Benin metropolis, thereby disrupting human and vehicular movement.
The incident caused serious traffic logjam on the road and other adjourning roads, as motorists seek alternate roads to get to their respective destinations. While some said that the action was in protest of the party’s lingering crisis, fictionalization and imposition of leadership on the people, others said it was against the now suspended mega rally by the party for receiving Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu and his associates.
The youths however opened one side of the road to traffic when the Area Commander in charge of the area, Danladi Isa, persuaded those who barricaded the main gate of Benin Airport to allow for free flow of traffic.
Addressing the youths, Danladi Isa who represented the Commissioner of Police, told the protesters that blocking the highway is criminal. He however assured them that no one will be arrested by the police. “I am here because of you people. I heard there is a protest here. That is why the Commissioner of Police sent me to find out what the problem is. I am the Area Commander in-Charge of this area. Blocking of the high way is a criminal offence. We appeal to you to open the highway for people to pass. We have instructed the police not to arrest anyone”, the police boss explained.
By evening of Thursday, Obaseki told journalists that “the State government is not aware of any rally and has therefore, not approved any rally.” But as of Friday morning, the Garick Memorial School where the Oshiomhole’s faction is expected to receive Ize Iyamu and his supporters has been under lock and key. Police officers were seen, by OpenLife reporter, manning the gate and preventing any human entry. Information however reveals that the venue has been shifted to a location in Eknwan Road in Benin.