Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has accused his deputy, Philip Shaibu, of planning to succeed him at all costs ahead of the state governorship election scheduled to hold in 2024.
According to Obaseki, Shuabi is so desperate to be the next governor of Edo State.
Obaseki said this while addressing stakeholders of the Peoples Democratic Party on the ongoing rift between him and Shuabu in a video posted by AIT on Friday.
The governor stressed that Shaibu’s plan to become governor of the state in the next election is making him run a parallel government in their administration.
He said, “The constitution made me the governor of Edo State and it does not give room for a co-governor.
“My keen interest has been to unify and consolidate our party that’s why I supervised the local government election.
“He has never come to me to talk about running. He just said he is consulting.
“He (Shaibu) went to Abuja and was boasting that he has connections in Abuja, that he has people in the national assembly, that they are all with the president now, that they will take care of him.
“That if he cannot get the ticket in PDP, he knows what to do,” he noted.
Narrating why their rift heated up, Obaseki said, “During the nomination of the commissioners. About five of us were supposed to look at the list of nominees from the local government of the state.
“That morning I called him for the meeting, but he didn’t attend. That’s why Itsako does not have a commissioner. I still gave him the respect to provide his nominee when he’s ready.
Explaining further, he added, “I kept quiet and said I thought we were together. But what struck me, and I have never said this to anybody, is that after I proclaimed the House of Assembly, we were now going to elect officers.
“He was in Abuja, he came back that day. I am the chief security officer of this state. I get any information I need. But I have the responsibility to keep quiet and use the information properly.
“My deputy called the leader in APC, telling the leader that during the elections on the next day, particularly the speaker of the house of assembly, he has five members who are loyal to him and that he would like the seven members of APC to work with his five members of PDP to produce the next speaker.
“As far as I am concerned, that was not working in our common interest.
“Why would the deputy governor seek to have another speakership candidate outside of what the governor wants? Are we working together?
“That was when I knew we had a problem. That the deputy governor has become so desperate to take over that he would do anything, including carrying out a coup, against his governor.
“How can you say you are loyal and you will do such a thing?”
Obaseki said he has repeatedly told Shaibu to keep his governorship ambition in check because there is still a lot of work to be done before next year’s transition.
The PUNCH had earlier reported that Shaibu approached the court, seeking protection from Obaseki to avoid an imminent impeachment and removal from office.
In a motion on notice brought before the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, the appellant seeks an order of interlocutory injunction stopping the respondents or their agents from harassing, intimidating, embarrassing, or preventing the applicant from carrying out the functions of his office as Deputy Governor of Edo State, including attending State Executive Council meetings and other functions pending the determination of the substantive suit.
Meanwhile, in the court on August 4, Justice Mohammed directed the parties in the suit to maintain the status quo in a ruling on the impeachment move.
The order for the status quo is to be in force till the time the defendants shall show cause as directed in another ruling of the court made on July 27, 2023.