The Edo ministerial nominees are presently being held up because of the feud between the supporters of the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki.
Three names: former deputy governor to Oshiomhole, Mr. Pius Odubu, former member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Patrick “Igodomigodo” Obahiagbon and ex-Edo Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Henry Idahagbon are top on the list of names submitted by Oshiomhole to President Muhammadu Buhari for consideration.
Supporters of Obaseki are however said to be very angry with the list on the ground that he was left out in the choice of potential ministers by his predecessor.
They contended that in line with convention, it is the governor who ought to draw the list in league with the national chairman and other stakeholders, ought not to be sidelined as is currently the case.
Against the backdrop of the opposition, an APC source who would not want his name in print explained that the names are yet to be forwarded to President Buhari for consideration.
From the selection of candidates during last year primaries of the party to the choice of Speaker for the State House of Assembly, the feuding factions are at daggers drawn as the ruling party faces an implosion in the run-up to next year’s governorship poll.
On June 17, during the nighttime inauguration of the seventh session of the House of Assembly which witnessed the emergence of Mr. Frank Okiye (Esan North East 1) as the Speaker, only nine of the House of Assembly members-elect, deemed loyal to the governor where invited leaving out the remaining 19, who are reportedly Oshiomhole’s men.
The source added: “It is no secret that the latest duel in the raging cold war between Oshiomhole and Obaseki’s loyalists are the names on Edo ministerial list. Obaseki supporters are not disposed to the national chairman sending the names all alone without the governor’s input are determined to fight back, all the way. Except they sheathe the sword, Edo will be left out when the names of Ministers are released by the president.”
The source added that Oshiomhole supporters however countered, insisting that with the emergence of Okiye, who they described as a minority Speaker, there is no way, Obaseki will have a say in the state ministerial list.
He said: “For Oshiomhole supporters, since the governor single-handedly picked Okiye, his former deputy chief of staff as Speaker, there is no way, he can partake in the choice of Minister. For equity sake, Oshiomhole’s Camp should produce the speaker. That is their recipe for peace.”
Determined efforts to reach the APC state chairman, Mr. Anslem Ojezua on his mobile phone proved futile as the line was switched off while the spokesman, Mr. Chris Azebamwan complained that the line was not clear but refused to respond to a text message on the ongoing tussle.