Tony Osauzo, Benin
Former commissioners representing the three senatorial districts of Edo State in the Edo State Oil Gas Producing Area Commission (EDOSOGPADEC), who announced their resignation earlier on Monday, have paid a visit to the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, at his campaign office in Benin City, where they pledged their support, condemning the administration of Governor Godwin Obaseki for being ‘insincere, fraudulent, and deceitful’.
At the meeting were Prince Emmanuel Odigie of Edo Central Senatorial District, Rilwanu Oshiomhole of Edo North, and Osamwonyi Atu of Orhionmwon.
Prince Odigie said of the Governor: ‘Which Esan person has he empowered in his government or given relevance? All his promises to the people have gone unfulfilled. Instead of focusing on governance, he is doing everything to bring every Edo person down. The people of Esan can see through the ruse and deception”, he said.
Atu lamented the lack of development in the region despite its status as a major oil producer in the State. He expressed regret for working for the Governor, stating that his resignation and resolve to back the bid of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu for the governorship is borne from his desire to put an end to what he characterised as Governor Obaseki’s non-performance as governor.
On his part, Oshiomhole accused the Obaseki administration of abandoning the people.
Pastor Ize-Iyamu, on receiving the former commissioners, described their resignation as a ‘milestone in the journey to move Edo State forward, change the present deceitful government, and install a government that will truly represent the people.’
He stated: ‘I salute the courage of these men who heeded the call of their conscience and placed their integrity over office to resign from a government that is insincere, fraudulent, and deceitful.
‘I know that in their usual practice of castigating and smearing the image of people not supportive of their plan to foist themselves on the state for another term, the State Government will likely commence the spread of baseless reports claiming that these men were induced to make the decision they made.
‘But as they can testify to everyone here, this is the first time I am meeting with them in a long while. Their decision to resign was made on their own accord based on their integrity and unwillingness to be a part of a government without profitable plans for their people.
‘I thank Prince Emmanuel Odigie for the revelations he has made today, especially on the deceitful ‘Esan agenda’ that the incumbent is bandying. A governor that does not respect the Esan people or empower them, is that the Governor who will hand over power to them?,’ Ize-Iyamu queried.
He promised to work with the former commissioners as they, on their part, also vowed to reveal more facts about the fraudulent ways of the incumbent Governor.
The commissioners who resigned their appointment on Monday, in their separate resignation letters dated July 27 gave different reasons for their resignations.
Atu gave ‘family issues’ for his resignation.
‘I need to resign to take care of compelling family issues that need my immediate attention,’ he wrote.
On his part, Odigie stated that ‘following due consideration and wide consultations, I have resolved to resign as a member representing Edo Central Senatorial District in the EDOSOGPADEC.
‘The appointment was given to me based on my membership and commitment to the All Progressives Congress (APC). I have contested elections twice to the House of Representatives on the APC platform, as a party loyalist and based on my principles, I strongly believe it will be unfair to cross over to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).’
Similarly, the Edo North representative on the board, Oshiomhole, said his resignation was to enable him back the APC candidate in the September 19 governorship elections.
The Commissioner for Environment and Sustainability, Ms Omua Oni-Okpaku, resigned her appointment from the Obaseki government last Friday.
Former Chief of Staff Mr Taiwo Akerele and Commissioner for Information and Orientation Mr Paul Ohonbamu had earlier resigned their appointments.