I just read an article by an unknown author asking the Binis not to vote for Godwin Obaseki on account of his grandfather’s attitude against Oba Ovoramwen. Though the author tried to appear intelligent, I can’t help but state that the author appears to be myopic in his thought pattern because he simply forgot that we have passed the era of primordial sentiments when it comes to picking a candidate that will best represent the diverse interests of the Edo people.
If not for anything, Ize Iyamu and his cronies have shown much disrespect to the Oba’s palace. Some of these are:
1. He, as SSG to Lucky, assisted in cheating the Oba Erediawa of his monthly entitlement. The then Oba (Benin Traditional Council) was being paid 2 million naira instead of 10 million thus short changing the Oba to the tune of 8 million monthly. This happened for 8 years. Mathematically, what they stole from the Oba was 8,000,000.00 x 12 months = 96,000,000.00. Multiply this figure by 8 years and you get 96,000,000.00 x 8 = 768,000,000.00. What a mind boggling amount.
When Osunbor became the Governor, he increased it to 4 million every month. However, when Oshiomhole became the Governor, he discovered this fraud and drew the palace attention to it. He not only increased it to 10 million naira, he paid the Oba (Benin Tradional Council) the arrears spanning from Lucky’s era to Osunbor era.
2. The benefactors of Ize Iyamu especially Osawaru Igbinedion consistently showed arrogant disrespect to Oba Erediauwa. First, he went to Germany and claimed to be the Paramount ruler of Bini Kingdom.
Second, he gave the late Ooni a royal bead which only the Oba has the sole authority to give. This action reveals that he saw himself as bigger or equal to the Oba.
Third, when Lucky lost his bid to be governor of the State during the era of NRC and SDP, Lucky and his father took Oba Erediauwa to Court claiming that the purported statement made by the then Isekhure of Bini that the Binis should vote for somebody that would respect the palace was the order of Oba Erediauwa.
It is on record that Oba Erediauwa wore red regalia to the Court and he trekked there. When Osawaru Igbinedion saw that the Oba wore red, he left the Court, went home and came back adorned in red attire, an indication that he was poised for war with the Oba. This incidence made Osayomore Joseph to sing a song titled “ododo”.
3. When Lucky became the Governor under the umbrella of the PDP, his father reminded him of the purported role the palace played when he tried to be the governor in his first attempt and asked his son to disgrace Oba Erediauwa. To keep to his father’s promise, Lucky tried to elevate the status of the Elawure of Usen (his mother’s village) to the status of an Oba. He would have succeeded if not for the fierce resistant of some Bini Chiefs and elders.
4. Oba Erediawa had a quarrel with Osawaru Igbinedion (his subject) on account of his meademenour as explained in my second paragraph under item 2. Instead of Osawaru Igbinedion to apologise for his gross disrespect to the Oba, he constituted himself into a demi-god and expected that the Oba should accord him respect. On the day the Oba was to celebrate his Igue festival, Igninedion also fixed his on same day; a taboo in Bini Kingdom. He not only did this, he invited some Bini Chiefs to come celebrate with him when he knew that these Chiefs ought to be with the Oba. Unfortunately, 4 Bini Chiefs honored his invitation. This action of his was meant to send a signal to Oba Erediauwa that he, too, is an Oba in his own foolish right. Not done with his arrogant disrespect to Oba Erediawa, he paid some Bini women to go to the palace with a mandate that the Oba should settle his quarrel with his subject. Instead of asking these women to beg for forgiveness on his behalf, he asked them to tell the Oba to settle the quarrel they had. What an insult. Can a subject claim to be bigger than his master?
5. Ize Iyamu is known to have confiscated the land of the Oba claiming that he wanted to use it to set up a farm. Can you beat that. None done with stealing the Oba’s money, he still had the effrontery to take his land. Can any disrespect be bigger than this?
6. When Ize Iyamu flagged off his campaign, one would have expected him to first visit the Oba, in this case the Crown Prince, as is customary but he refused because of the disrespect he and the Igbinedion family have consistently shown to the palace. However, when it became a trending news, he visited the Crown Prince, apologised and formally informed him of his intention to become the governor. If he could do this as a candidate, just imagine what he would do as governor if elected! God forbid.
Now to the issues contained therein in the post that the Binis should not vote for Godwin Obaseki because of what transpired between his grand father and Oba Ovoramwen, I want to state here that the Binis are more enlightened and would gladly give their votes to a man that would respect the Palace the same way Oshiomhole has demonstrated because the Binis are learned and very proactive. They are not dumb as some misguided miscreants would want to portray them. Godwin Obaseki will get the Bini votes because he has never shown disrespect to the palace, and he will never contemplate such.
Please, mention one sin of Godwin Obaseki against the Bini palace; the answer is none but we can can mention several sins Ize Iyamu and his cronies have committed against Bini palace.
Instead, of addressing issues of State affairs, a group of biased and self centred elements have decided to throw up primordial sentiments by referring to the sins, as it were, Godwin’s grand father committed against Oba Ovoramwen forgetting that such as been thrown into the dustbin of history!
To show to you that the palace bear no grudge against the Obaseki family, there has since been inter marriages between the Oba’s family and the Obaseki family. Infact, it is a tradition that one of the Oba’s daughters must marry a man from the Obaseki family. This move is to further cement the beautiful friendship between both families. The deceitful ambition of Ize Iyamu will not spoil such.
It is also on record that Oba Erediawa gave chieftaincy titles to two of Godwin brothers – Chief Oyuki Gaius Obaseki and two others. If there was a feud between the Oba’s family and Obaseki family, the much respected Oba Erediauwa would not have done so.
It is also on record that Oba Erediawa elevated the Obaseki family from Eghaevbo N’Ogbe title holders to Eghaevbo N’ore title holders on 26th of February, 1990. The former being lower than the latter in terms of recognition and importance. If Oba Erediawa had any form of acrimony against the Obaseki family, would he had done so?
My question is this: Do the Binis know more than the Oba?
The present Benin Crown Prince, Prince Eheneden Erediauwa, has welcomed Godwin Obaseki into his palace on several occasions. Infact, he described Godwin Obaseki as a worthy son of Bini Kingdom. Do the Binis know more than our respected Crown Prince; the next Oba of the great Bini Kingdom?
The paramount interest of the Edo people is to select a candidate that would move the State to the next level. The candidates that have been offered to the people to pick fromthe party should be assessed on the following points which ofcourse is not limited to such:
1. Trust and Responsibility
2. Integrity and Pedigree
3. Service Delivery
4. Empowerment of the populace
5. Servant-Leader relationship between the elected and the people and,
6. Fiscal Managerial Ability.
It becomes imperative to Xray the various candidates because one of them, if elected, will determine the fate of the electorates and non electorates in Edo State for the next 4 years or so. Our dwindling resources should be entrusted in the hands of a governor that would use small measures to make big impact. The preferred candidate should and must continue the developmental strides of Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.
Though we have our preferences based on informed reasons, we should be mindful of the fact that what we want is a better Edo State which invariably translates to a better Country. This must, as liberated individuals, be our sole interest. Anything less is simply unacceptable.
Having Xray the candidates, only Godwin Obaseki fit the bill as he has what it takes to move this dear State to the next level. Without mincing words, Ize Iyamu should not be trusted because of his antecedents in the past.
Though he may claim to have changed as he now address himself as a “Pastor”, he should still not be trusted with Edo State resources given the fact that he had decided to surround himself with well known treasury looters.
Ordinary speaking, Ize Iyamu should apologise to the people of Edo State for the ignoble role he played in the looting era of Lucky Igbinedion instead of asking Edo people for votes. When confronted on many fronts to explain how Lucky succeeded in looting the State resources he will quickly tell you that he was a mere appointee. An appointee indeed yet it on record that he co-signed many contracts that were never executed but monies were paid out. By distancing himself from Lucky indicates one fact; he was part and parcel of those that converted the State resources to their personal funds. His CV says so; Manager; Skanger (owed by Lucky), PA to Lucky when he was Oredo Local Govt. Chairman, Chief of Staff to Lucky and SSG to Lucky. The only work experience he has came from working for Lucky; his Principal that was convicted of corruption. This same Lucky is the person that boasted openly that he would anoint Ize Iyamu as the next governor of the State and also repeated this very morning during the father Esama birthday thanksgiving in Church. What nonsense! Do they think Edo people are foolish.
Still on the post, Prince Edun Akenzua stated his personal opinion and such should not be used to score cheap political points. However, if you read the post carefully, you will realize that the Prince has stated in clear terms that Obaseki will be the next governor. The respected Prince is not the only person that shares this thought but it is apt to state that every party has its mechanism to throw up its candidates.
The PDP,’in all honesty, imposed Ize Iyamu on the good people of Bini. If it weren’t credible candidates like Solomon Edebiri and Onaiwu would not have left the party. Another credible candidate, Matthew, would be seen joining forces with Ize Iyamu. As I said earlier, it is the internal workings of every political party to decide how to pick its candidates but such should be done in a free and fair atmosphere.
I want to reiterate that the main issue on ground is to pick a candidate that would represent our diverse interests, take Edo State to the next level of developmental strides, and Godwin Obaseki is the preferred candidate in my opinion. As far as I am concerned, Edo people would not have wished for a better person. The foregoing is apt because those circulating articles of hate has not been able to pin a negative thing on him hence; they are attacking his forebears. Can such be said of Ize Iyamu!
To end this piece, I want to state that the said article is spurious, myopic and meant to elicit negative reactions from the Binis; a people endowed with enlightened and proactive individuals.
Lastly, I sincerely believe that the hallowed institution of the Bini Monarch viz a viz the Palace of our respected Oba should not be dragged into the murky waters of politics in whatever disguise. Anybody doing so should be regarded as showing disrespect to that sacrosanct institution.