Edo rally: Oshiomhole fumes, blames police for violence …warns deputy gov against thuggery

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The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, has lambasted the Edo State Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu, for the violence in the state on Thursday which resulted in 15 people being injured.

Oshiomhole also blamed the police, Mohammed Adamu, for the situation, saying it was strange that they were unable to properly secure the state.

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There had been tension in the state over a rally by a faction of the APC loyal to Oshiomhole to welcome a former Peoples Democratic Party member, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

Ahead of the rally which held on Friday, tension built up in the state, which saw Oshiomhole’s supporters clash with those loyal to Governor Godwin Obaseki at the Airport Road in Benin City.

Although the rally was meant to be held at the playground of Garrick Memorial School in the city, the state government cancelled the event, stating no permission was granted to any group to use the venue for any activity.

Consequently, the rally venue was changed to Eze-Iyamu’s residence at Ugbor GRA at the last minute.

Speaking earlier at the rally, Oshiomhole blamed Shaibu for Thursday’s violence, even as Obaseki was away with the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), and two other governors in Egypt to attend the Aswan Forum on Peace and Development in Africa.

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Oshiomhole said, “Let me send a message to Philip (deputy governor) about his propensity for violence. If he is not careful, his case will be that of he who rides on the back of a tiger. Where does it end?

“I still want to appeal to him; this is not student unionism. Violence will not take him anywhere; it can only compound his problems. You are fighting for a ticket, you are fighting to win the hearts of the electorate.

“I fought battles here, but not with gunshots. It was the power of the ballot and not the barrel of the gun that we used to take over the governance of this state. If they now believe that thuggery is the way to go, I pray that God redirects them to refocus their brain politically.”

The APC chair added, “How on this planet earth (is this happening!) A game that is about numbers; somebody (Ize-Iyamu) is coming to join you, (yet) you say you don’t want, when we should be using various means to bring them into (the party), particularly people we know are on the ground.”

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