Amid the fanfare that greeted Governor Godwin Obaseki’s pitching tent with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to contest for re-election in Edo State, his Deputy, Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu, has also led his supporters in defecting to the PDP.
Comrade Shaibu, who spoke to journalists after obtaining his PDP membership card at the party secretariat in Benin City, expressed disappointment over the undemocratic actions and tendencies of Comrade Adams Oshiomole in his management of the APC at the national level.
He stated, “I have a mixed feeling with this action. First, one struggled to form a party and after forming that party, those that benefitted from the party took over the party and became tyrants. It is not always easy that after one helped to form and nurture a party, one individual would say he is an Adolf Hitler in the system and becomes undemocratic. That was what happened in the APC.”
Comrade Shaibu, however, expressed his unalloyed loyalty to Edo people, noting that their calls for the governor and his team to join the PDP has been heard.
He assured that Governor Obaseki remains steadfast with his vision and mission to actualise the aspirations of Edo people and that the strides made in social, economic and human capital development of the state must not be compromised.
He said: “Some of us believe in the people. We believe that the people must lead at all times. Because of that, we cannot afford to abandon this state for people like that. That is why we decided to abandon them in APC and join the PDP today.”
Earlier, Jungle Journalist Media Ltd had report that the Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, officially joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in furtherance of his ambition to seek re-election for a second term in the September, 2020 gubernatorial poll in the state.
The governor, who had kept a lid on his next move since leaving the All Progressives Congress (APC), quietly drove out of the Government House, Benin City, on Friday, at 2:25pm, headed for the Secretariat of the PDP in the state.
The governor’s motorcade drove through major roads leading to the PDP secretariat on First East Circular Road, Benin City, to cheers from both sides of the road.
Speaking to a gathering of party members and supporters, Governor Obaseki, said: “I am here to inform you that upon my resignation from the APC, having consulted widely from within the state and across the country, I have decided to become a member of the PDP.
“As has been demonstrated, this is a party that is rooted in democratic practices; it believes in justice and fairness and respects its members. Today is not the day I will make a speech. You will hear from me soon.
“I am here to go through the formalities of registering as a member of this great party. I know that upon taking membership of this party, I automatically become the leader of the party; that is the constitution. I read it thoroughly last night.”
He continued: “I want to assure all of you that I am prepared to provide leadership that will lead the party to victory. I will provide a leadership that will not only put PDP ahead in Edo State but, as a ruling party in Edo State, we will make sure that the level of progress, growth and participation in the political system by our people is unrivaled in this country.
“I am very happy to be here. The reception I have received has been ecstatic. The energy I see here is the kind of energy I require to take Edo to the next level.”
Noting that he was committed to changing the narrative of the party in the state, Obaseki said, “If you think we have done a lot in the last four years, you haven’t seen anything yet. With the quality of people I have seen here, the quality of people running the party, and the energy of youth I see, by the grace of God who made this day possible, I am committing to you that I will not only lead this party to victory in Edo State, but we will make sure that this party sets an example of how states should be run in Africa. Today, it is with great pleasure, Mr. Chairman, that I have come to formally take on my membership of this great party.
The governor was received by the National Vice Chairman, South-south of the PDP, Chief Emmanuel Ogidi, in the company of the PDP State Chairman, Mr. Anthony Aziegbemi and other party executives, including the governor’s ward chairman.