Benin city, the Edo State capital stood still yesterday,
when the chairman of the state Economic Team, Mr
Godwin Obaseki officially declared his intention to run
for the 2016 governorship election under the All
Progressives Congress (APC). In his declaration,
Obaseki said, “It will be a sin against God and my
people if I walk away from Edo state with the
knowledge and experience that I have gathered. It will
be unpatriotic not to stand and be counted. Over the
last thirty years I have had successful experience in
the private sector and over the last seven years I have
been part of the most successful administration in
Nigeria which is Edo state”.
It was endorsement galore as Obaseki announced the
state Commissioner for Works and Oshiomhole’s
political son, Mr Osarodion Ogie as his Campaign
Director. The Speaker of the state House of Assembly,
Mrs Elizabeth Ativie, led other members of the state
House of Assembly to endorse Obaseki.
Majority Leader of the House, Folly Ogedengbe
endorsed Obaseki on behalf of the Edo North people,
former Deputy Governor of the state, Mr Lucky
Imasuen endorsed him on behalf of Edo South while
the Deputy Speaker of the House Justin Okonobo
endorsed him on behalf of the people of Edo Central.
Others who endorsed him include the youth wing of
APC led by Tony Kabaka, ALGON led by Morrison,
market women and several leaders of the party. The
traditional Urhokpota hall was filled to the brim while
members of the state Executive Council were also
Ogie who endorsed Obaseki on behalf of members of
the Governor Adams Oshiomhole Political family, said
they will not embark on any hate campaign because
“we have a good product. You cannot build your
house and abandon it for a tenant to take over.
People are shouting continuity, continuity, what are
you going to continue, it is Oshiomhole’s work.
“Obaseki is the best person to do the work. The game
just started, we will not abuse anybody but anybody
who abuses us, we will reply. I speak for Oshiomhole
political family, we have endorsed Obaseki and the
game has just began”, he declared.
Obaseki in his address said “as this administration
comes to an end, we are faced with new challenges,
as you all know the price of crude oil has reduced
significantly therefore Nigeria is not able to earn
enough foreign exchange to import its goods and
services. This has brought economic hardship to
many of us. These challenges pose new threats to us.
In the face of these challenges, we need a leadership
with fresh and original ideas to help us face these
challenges, so that we can build on the success of the
Oshiomhole led administration.
“We must be courageous and determined to achieve
the goals we want for our people. I therefore stand
before you today, on the shoulders of the successes
built by the current administration over the last seven
and half years,we have transformed Edo state in all
aspects. However, the Edo project is still work in
progress and we are now in the most delicate part of
the journey. We cannot afford any reversal in the
achievements we have made today.
“There are a lot more we still need to do. We still have
to construct thousands of kilometres of road into our
rural communities and into farms. We still need to
improve our school infrastructure.’’
We need to further strengthen our service delivery to
our people, we need to address the unemployment
problem which is facing us. It will be a huge risk for all
of us if we revert political powers to those who lack the
deep understanding of how we got to where we are
and how we have achieved what we have achieved
and how we will make the link between what we have
achieved and our future.
“If we make the mistake of giving power to such
people we will go back and suffer more than we have
ever suffered before. By the grace of God that will
never happen in Edo state. I am very proud and happy
that I have been an integral part of the success we
have achieved in Edo state. The knowledge I have
gained in the last seven and half years have put me in
a unique position to understand what is required to
take Edo to the next level.
“ I believe that I can fly Edo higher. What Edo state
needs today is a leader who in addition to political
sagacity has the managerial, and intellectual
experience to manage the state in this difficult time.
Over the last sixteen weeks, I have consulted
extensively with elder statesmen across the state, with
my colleagues in government, with my family and
friends and with delegates around the 192 wards of
I stand before you today with the commitment to
ensuring that what we have achieved is not only
sustained but so that we can guarantee the future of
our children, so that we can provide empowerment for
our women, our pensioners, civil servants, markets
women, our artisans with deeper involvement with our
traditional institutions. I therefore announce to you all
that I am seeking the ticket of the APC so that I can fly
the flag of APC come September 10, 2016. I will
continue to build the infrastructural revolution that we
“We have been able to manage the finances of Edo
state better and ensured that there is transparency in
government. We have improved service delivery to our
people through the use of ICT. This government has
executed several projects in all aspects, it is because
of this transparency that Edo state remains one of the
few states that are able to pay salaries” he stated.