Will Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State remain in the All Progressives Congress, APC, after losing re-election ticket? Will he defect to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, or another party to pursue his second term ambition? These questions and more will be answered after his meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, the governor said, yesterday, as APC governors angled to get a soft-landing for him, following his disqualification for the governorship primary by the ruling party.
Apart from being disqualified, which has been upheld by the National Working Committee, NWC, a faction of the APC in Edo wants Obaseki; factional state chairman, Anselm Ojezua; and Dr Aisosan Amadasun expelled for alleged anti-party activities. The polity has been abuzz with reports of Obaseki’s next move. The PDP elders and leadership have indicated their readiness to welcome Obaseki and hand him the party’s ticket, if he met some conditions. Obaseki’s supporters are upbeat about his chances of being re-elected and are pressuring him to consider all options, starting with PDP, to realize his quest. One of PDP’s hurdles for Obaseki is to drop his deputy, Phillip Shaibu. At one of the meetings with PDP stakeholders, sources said that Shaibu angrily walked out when the idea of dropping him as running mate was broached. A source said: “The deputy governor disagreed with at least 50 per cent of the conditions set by the PDP for them to come into the party, one of which is that the PDP will choose the deputy for the governor. He walked out of the meeting.” However, Governor Obaseki, who visited Governors Nyesom Wike of Rivers and Udom Emmanuel, said he will disclose his next step after meeting President Buhari.
APC govs seek soft landing for Obaseki Governors of the ruling APC, on Saturday night, met via teleconference and agreed to work towards strengthening internal party mechanisms for the selection of candidates in the Edo and Ondo governorship primaries. Although, a terse statement issued by the governors under the aegis of Progressive Governors Forum, PGF, was silent on the fate of Governor Obaseki, a source privy to the outcome of the meeting said there are ongoing engagements to resolve all issues in the Edo and Ondo states chapters of the party. The source said: “I know there are several engagements still ongoing to resolve some of the controversial steps taken by the APC’s NWC. We might likely see a reversal of some of these decisions because the feeling is that NWC does not have the powers to do some of the things they did regarding Edo. So, the governors are still engaging with all concerned stakeholders.” However, the governors in their resolution pledged to work towards the unity of the party.