The Edo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leaders have flayed Deputy Governor Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu for resorting to legal action over allegations that the State Governor Mr. Godwin Obaseki is planning to impeach him. The party leaders accused the deputy governor of failure to exhaust the party’s internal conflict resolution processes.
The leaders, convened in Igueben Local Government Area, represent the Edo Central Senatorial District of the State. Prominent PDP figures present included Edo State PDP Chairman Hon. Tony Aziegbemi, former Chairman of PDP Board of Trustees Chief Tom Ikimi, former Senator representing Edo Central Senatorial District Sen. Clifford Odia, former House of Representatives member Sergius Ogun representing Esan South East/Esan North East Federal Constituency, and Hon. Joe Edionwele, a former House of Representatives member representing Esan Central, Esan West, and Igueben Federal Constituency.
In a communique issued following the meeting, they stated, “An Extraordinary Meeting of Edo Central Senatorial District PDP leaders was held on August 13th, 2023, in Igueben, where various key issues affecting the party in the state were discussed.”
The communique continued, “During the meeting, Chief Francis Ulinfun moved a motion of unwavering confidence in Governor Godwin Nogheghase Obaseki, seconded by Elder Johnny Abhulimen. The motion received unanimous support from all the attending leaders on behalf of the party in Esanland.”
The leaders acknowledged the strides being made in the party’s peace and reconciliation efforts to unite factions within the party, particularly in Esanland. However, they expressed dismay over the strained relationship between Governor Godwin Obaseki and Deputy Governor Rt. Hon. Philip Shaibu.
They remarked, “The entire leadership of Edo Central PDP collectively believes that the ensuing controversy was avoidable, especially since the core issue centers around the gubernatorial succession at the end of the current tenure.”
The leaders emphasized that their stance is rooted in their strong belief in equity and other factors related to competence and public acceptance. They highlighted that there is already consensus that the next Governor should emerge from Edo Central Senatorial District, given that the district has not legally produced a Governor since the democratic era began in 1999.
Furthermore, they condemned the move to resort to legal action without first exhausting the dispute resolution options provided in the party’s constitution. The leaders noted that Governor Obaseki has confirmed he has no intentions to impeach his Deputy.
Consequently, they urged Deputy Governor Shaibu to retract his lawsuit and seek a political resolution with Governor Obaseki. They expressed confidence in the party’s ability to mediate between the leaders in government.
Finally, Governor Godwin Obaseki’s determination to complete his term effectively was highlighted, and the leaders called upon all well-meaning individuals to collaborate with him for the progress of Edo State.