Tag Archives: Godwin Obaseki

EDO 2020: We must encourage more people to register and participate in elections – Patriot Eholor

The 2020 Governorship election in Edo State has come and gone, and winners and losers have emerged after a tight contest.

In this interview, Democracy Defender and Observer General of the Federal Republic, Patriot Patrick Eholor airs his views on the elections and the way forward for politics, politicians and electioneering in Nigeria.


What is your view about the outcome of the election?

I think the people have spoken and we must respect the rights of the people. Elections have never been perfect anywhere in the world, it’s a democratic process and so there must be a winner and a loser.

Was it up to your expectation?

I wouldn’t say it’s not up to my expectation. We must educate the electorate, however, we must encourage people over 18 years to register so they can participate in the next election because we have more people dancing owanbe, beating drums, dancing azonto, changing the campaign ground to a comedy ground.

Can you attest that this election will change the face of election in Nigeria, particularly in Ondo?

Election is a serious business. I think there will be a lot of lessons to be learned from our own election as regards the upcoming Ondo election.

What is your score for INEC and police?

INEC isn’t perfect but I think they did tremendously well during this election and should be commended. Police are not supposed to observe and monitor our elections, however I must praise them because they were not biased and partisan in this election from my own opinion.

Why should Edo people be celebrated in this election?

I think the Edo people should be celebrate this election because we have less casualties and the ‘Omo n’ Oba’ of Benin, Ewuare the Great should be highly praised for his prayers.

Did the election really represent the voice of Edo people?

I think the election really represented the Edolites because we can’t be cowed.

What is your advice to the loser, Pastor Ize-Iyamu Osagie and party?

My advice to Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu is he should remain steadfast and be a leader that he has truly been and congratulate those who stood behind him during this tough times.

What are your expectations from the winner, Gov Goodwin Obaseki and your advice?

My advice for Godwin Obaseki is he should tune down his rhetoric. It’s only God that choose to have mercy for those he has mercy on and govern those who voted for him and those who didn’t vote for him. He is an elected governor of Edo State not for PDP or APC.

Can you see hope for Edo people in Obaseki’s second term in office?

Edo State has proven that they are the pacesetters of Nigerian politics. They will not expect anything less than the best from his administration.

What will One Love Foundation do to help the Obaseki Government?

One Love Foundation will remain fair and firm.
It’s committed in checkmating any underperforming government and institutions. I hereby congratulate men and women who came out under the sun and rain to cast their vote. ‘Oba gha to kpe re, Ise!’

Edo State, Role Model of Nigeria’s Democracy, says EPIA

By Isaac Eranga

Edo Progressive Indigenous Association EPIA also know as Edo Indigenous movement Worldwide, said with the free and fair conduct of the Edo Governorship election, Edo Indigenes have proven to the world that civilization started with the Edo people of West Africa.

This was disclosed by the Edo indigenous leader and President of EPIA, Chief Dr. Bishop Omogiade Enoyiogiere Edokpolo in Benin City after the end of September 19th Edo Governorship election. He called on other Nigerian States to emulate Edo State in moving Nigeria forward.

Chief Dr. Edokpolo said Edo election attracted the attention of the world. He said Edo State became the focus of the world, saying Edo election became popular like that of Nigeria general election.

“Even the media was not exempted; the election can be described as one of the most peaceful elections in the history of Nigeria irrespective of the negative predictions of violence.

“This will go a long way to further send a clear message to all the political devourers that Edo people has gotten a clear understanding of what democracy is all about, they now focus matters to them most and not what the party leaders direct.

“Edo Indigenes have also proven that they have a mind of their own, and that to moving forward, the politicians must adopt the choice of the Indigenes and not the reverse.

“Edo can now officially be said to be the role model of democracy in Nigeria. It’s time to project Edo Indigene for presidency come 2023,” said the Edo indigenous leader.

To the winner of the election, Governor Godwin Obaseki, Chief Dr. Bishop Omogiade Enoyiogiere Edokpolo said he should always be grateful to Edo indigenes in the diaspora who mobilised their people to vote for him and spent their hard earn money to publicise him. He said Edo indigenes in the diaspora did more than enough to promote the candidature of Obaseki, i strongly recomend to the governor elect to join the Edo Indigenes in diaspora for the fight to promote diaspora vote protion to the federal government.

“I want to specially thank President of Nigeria- Muhammad Buhari and the Independent National Electoral Commission for ensuring that the election was free and fair. I also want to thank Edo Indigenous people at home for voting their concience by not selling their votes, he also call on the governor to ignore the none Indigenes who will instigate disunity or hatred among you and your fellow Indigenes and focus more on how you can unite all the Edo people irrespective of their political affiliations and not let Edo unity down.

“My final take is that he should not disappoint Edo indigenes and residents that voted him and pay more attention to Edo Indigenous people by creating empowerment for them as way to show appreciation to Edo Indigenes worldwide, the nonpartisan group EPIA/EIM , assure the governor elect that they will do everything to support
and partner with his administration in every sector to contribute to the development of Edo State ,” said he.

PDP’s Godwin Obaseki leads with over 80, 000 votes after 13 out of 18 LGs

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has announced results from 13 Local Government Areas in the Saturday’s governorship election in Edo State with the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Governor Godwin Obaseki winning so far in 11 of the 13 LGAs released.

The candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has won two of the LGAs announced at the commission’s collation centre in Benin, the state capital.

Obaseki of the PDP has secured 243, 604 against 154,192 votes polled by the APC’s Ize-Iyamu.

The Edo governor is winning with 89,412.

Below Are The Results LG By LG

Esan west LGA

APC: 7,189

PDP: 17,434

Total valid votes: 24,880

Rejected votes: 579

Total votes cast: 25,459

Oredo LGA (Obaseki’s LG)

APC: 18,365

PDP: 43,498

Total valid votes: 62,578

Rejected votes: 1,302

Total votes cast: 63,880

Esan south-east LGA

APC: 9,237

PDP: 10,563

Total valid votes: 19,896

Rejected votes: 307

Total votes cast: 20,203


APC: 26,140

PDP: 17,959

Total valid votes: 44,539

Rejected votes: 2,828

Total votes cast: 47,367


APC: 9,907

PDP: 16,987

Total valid votes: 27,437

Rejected votes: 934

Total votes cast: 28,371


APC: 11,193

PDP: 11,485

Total valid votes: 22,849

Rejected votes: 404

Total votes cast: 23,253


APC: 19,295

PDP: 14,762

Total valid votes: 34,246

Rejected votes: 515

Total votes cast: 34,761


APC: 10,202

PDP: 27,621

Total valid votes: 38,396

Rejected votes: 955

Total votes cast: 39,351


APC: 5,972

PDP: 10,022

Total valid votes: 16,283

Rejected votes: 352

Total votes cast: 16,635


APC: 18,218

PDP: 41,030


APC: 6,719

PDP: 10,694


APC: 6,556

PDP: 13,579

Valid votes: 20,369

Rejected votes: 361

Total votes cast: 20,730


APC: 5199

PDP: 7870

Total valid votes: 13,170

Rejected votes: 212

Total votes cast: 13,382


PDP: 243, 604

APC: 154,192

Source: Niger Delta Today

BREAKING! EDO GUBER 2020: No clear leading candidate between Obaseki, Ize-Iyamu yet •See early results

Early results from Saturday’s governorship election in some polling units across the 18 local government areas of Edo State showed that the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr. Godwin Obaseki, and the flag bearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, were in a tight race.

Though the final results were yet to be declared at press time on Saturday, both won their respective strongholds.

Our correspondents who monitored the election said there were reports of violence, vote buying, ballot box snatching and malfunctioning of card readers in some local government areas.

The election, according to our reporters, had massive turnout of voters in Oredo, Egor, Akoko Edo, Esan Central, Esan North West, Ikpoba Okha, Esako East and Esako West local government areas of the state.

Obaseki won his polling unit in Oredo Ward 4 with 184 votes, while his main challenger, Ize-Iyamu, scored 62 votes.

At his polling unit, Orhionwom Ward 5, unit 26, Ize-Iyamu polled 292, while Obaseki got 21 votes.

The deputy governor of the state, Philip Shaibu of the PDP won his ward 11, Unit 3 Etsako West Local Government with 789, APC polled 164 votes.

Results from some polling units in Etsako East Local Government showed that the APC polled 215, PDP 103 at ward: 001 – Agenebode, PU: 009 (Egbadu 2 and at Eramhe Primary School, Okpella III. Ward 7, PU: 3a, APC got 126, PDP: 126.

At Owan East, ward 2 unit 2 Ownu Primary School Ovbiomu II, PDP- 142, APC – 126; PU 018 , Goretti College Ikpoba Okha LG, APC – 49,PDP – 128; Igueben LG ward: 01 (Ekekhe/Idumuogo/Egbiki), PU: Ekekhe (003), APC-69, PDP- 97 and Eguare Primary School, Ewu 2, Ward 08, PU 09, Esan Central LGA, PDP – 269,APC – 48.

At Utantan Primary School, Ward 02, PU 03, Igueben LGA, APC – 110,PDP – 110; ward 04 (Uhe/Idumuogbo/Idumueke), PU 04 (Utantan Primary School, Igueben), Igueben LGA, APC – 240, PDP – 238; ward 04 (Uhe/Idumuogbo/Idumueke), PU 04 (Utantan Primary School, Igueben), Igueben LGA, APC – 240, PDP – 238 and at PU Uromi Unuwazi Primary School II (008), Esan North East LG, APC -44, PDP – 67.

At Ward 1 unit 2 Owan East LGA, PDP- 124, APC- 90; Owan West LGA, Sabongida, Ward 4 PU: 3, APC – 86, PDP-85, ward 1 Unit 7 Public field Gallary Afuze Owan East LGA, APC- 139

PDP- 87 and at PU 002, Ward 01, Esan North-East LGA, APC – 97, PDP – 129.

Edo Indigenous Movement rates guber candidates, tasks voters on manifestoes, antecedents

Founder, Edo Progressives Indigenous Assembly(EPIA), Chief (Bishop) Omogiade Enoyiogiere Edokpolo has charged eligible voters to give details to the manifestoes and previous records of those currently jostle to be governor of the state come September 19 as basis for making their choice.

The non- partisan group, founded in 2014 with the sole aim to promote amongst others, Edo indigenous language, cultural heritage and empowerment said the governorship candidates agenda constitute a major determinant to evaluate their ability to deliver the dividends of democracy to Edo people .

“We think both candidates, although there are others in the race are all Edo prominent indigenes, they have the technical know-how on how to pilot the affairs of the state. We are puting it before Edo indigenes to go and look at their manifestoes and check their previous records to determine who they will vote for,” he noted.

Edokpolor who condemned the shootings, attacks, violent clashes by suspected party thugs in the last few weeks, heaped the blame at the door of political parties in the state.

Drawing a comparative appraisal between the two contending lead candidates, Edokpolor said though the group has no preexisting records on the APC Governorship candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize Iyamu but that judging from his presentations, synergies and the ways Edo people rally round him “chances are that he will be able to come up with something credible in line with his Simple Agenda”.

On Governor Godwin Obaseki, he posited “I think he has done well in terms of international investors and digital development attraction to the state including some infrastructure. But he has done very little or less in indigenous empowerment programmes and above all, he needs to be more in touch and accessible to the indigenes because we are native people and not English.

“On that note we score him 6.2 over 10 (62 percent) and hope if he wins that he will do better in this area. I think that is the only reason he is having much pressure now in campaign, otherwise he is supposed win with zero effort” .

EPIA president said the incoming governor must cultivate the habit of dressing the way of Edo people including periodic appraisal of his manifestoes .

“How can a man show love to people he does not even dress like not to talk about speaking their language? ,” he asked.

RE: Obaseki and PDP’s Wicked Plot to Procure a Court Order to Stop APC and its Candidate Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu from Participating in the September 19, 2020 Governorship Election in Edo State: A Call for Judicial Caution

By Sebastine EBHUOMHAN

Reading through the above-titled call and a generated remark, I have noted with suspicion, the motive for Mr Osazua Ivbaze’s commentary on the essay written by Hon. Samson Raphael Osagie to sound an early alarm on an undemocratic move to duck direct contest of the forthcoming Edo State governorship election with the formidable and fearsome candidate of All Progressives Congress (APC), Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, by the incumbent Governor and candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Godwin Obaseki.

Hon. Osagie, a lawyer and politician of no mean feat, the former Minority Whip of the House of Representatives and now the Coordinator, APC Campaign Council in charge of Edo South Senatorial District, titled his piece as: Obaseki And PDP’s Wicked Plot To Procure A Court Order To Stop APC And Its Candidate Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu From Participating In The September 19, 2020 Governorship Election In Edo State: A Call For Judicial Caution.

In the simple, concise and lucid essay, the two-term former federal lawmaker described his fears and sounded an early alarm about a pernicious move by the rejected, confused, fearful and quarrelsome Obaseki to ensure that Mr Ize-Iyamu is prevented from participating in the election he is presently campaigning vigorously to win. Obaseki is seeking through the legal backdoor of a baseless injunctive order to stop the APC candidate.

Hon. Osagie concluded by urging the Chief Justice of Nigeria to prevail, as he has democratically asserted since he assumed office, on all superior courts of record to exercise utmost discretion and restraints in matters relating to Edo State governorship election before, during and after the poll without prejudice to their powers to entertain post-election petitions, so as to prevent avoidable constitutional crisis in Edo State.

Despite the obvious clarity in Hon. Osagie’s intelligent observation, Ivbaze, an educated and cerebral analyst, would rather focus his gaze on elementary issues that have no relationship, direct or indirect, to the write-up in a manner that portrays the journalist as deliberately seeking, albeit poorly, to divert attention from the weighty and criminal issues that Osagie raised against Obaseki, Ivbaze’s benefactor.

What are the key issues Osagie raised against Obaseki? One, that Obaseki is obviously jittery because of the high profile, pedigree, formidability and acceptability of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu and the APC. Two, that Obaseki is allegedly romancing and “grovelling” before an unnamed PDP godfather in Port Harcourt, who recently described the PDP as a party of “tax collectors” with the wicked intention of using the godfather to derail Edo State political process. Third, that with his alleged search for pliable judges, Obaseki is seeking to prevent through the back door of judiciary by ways and means of “injunctive order,” Ize-Iyamu’s participation and expected victory in the election. Four, that two senior lawyers: one in Edo State Government’s public service and the other in private practice have allegedly been contracted in tandem with another lawyer in Lagos to work to scuttle to the smooth election of POI, the people’s choice. And five, that millions of dollars and billions of naira are allegedly involved in the undemocratic scheme.

Osagie did not stop there, but went further to supply some base evidence in support of his claims, including the accurate description of a changing room talk.

While one or two of his claims are already domiciled at the public domain, others are so weighty that they cannot just be swept with a wave of the hand. One, that Governor Obaseki and his party, the PDP, are not campaigning anywhere in Edo State right now. Two, that the grounding of Obaseki’s re-election campaign has since resulted to a rift between him and his Deputy Governor. Three, that Mr Jack Obinyan, a Special Assistant to Governor Obaseki erroneously twitted words of the suspended former Edo APC Chairman, Anselm Ojezua, as saying: “APC has no candidate,” even when he and Ojezua knew APC NEC overwhelmingly ratified the candidacy of Ize-Iyamu at the party’s last meeting at the Presidential Villa. Four, that Obaseki, Ojezua and Obinyan are living in fools’ paradise for assuming they could throw spanner into the smooth work of Edo APC where Ojezua remains suspended with his well-known plans to sabotage APC work with the help of a few disgruntled party chairmen; which should make a sane person to ponder the question of who be granted audience out of a suspended and an unsuspended leaderships. And five, that Ojezua “virtually attended, albeit erroneously” the National Executive Committee which held at the Presidential Villa and which ratified APC governorship primary for Edo State.

In spite of the factual evidence available for a knowledge and understanding seeking commentator coupled with the fact that Port Harcourt has become the centre of recent dubious political injunctions even by PDP aspirants against fellow PDP aspirants, it beats the imagination of a reader hollow to see Ivbaze subjecting Osagie’s claims to a dismissive doubt, veiled in his half-hearted shock expressed without a scintilla of verification or investigation. It shows the hatchet columnist is either expressing a blind bias for his benefactor or just out to cause some mischief intended to derail the focus of the general public from a glaring tendency for increasing violence, deadly desperation and impulsive implosions of Governor Obaseki as he watches his re-election slipping through his shaking, almost lifeless fingers.

To conclude, the concern of every well-meaning Edo son and daughter for a free, fair and credible governorship election should be to see Governor Godwin Obaseki and PDP leaders truly stopping their internal wrangling and embarking on a serious political campaign across the nooks and crannies of Edo State before September 19, 2020. That is the only way Obaseki can revive his dying re-election dream.

Sebastine EBHUOMHAN is an award-winning journalist from Edo State resident in Abuja. He can be reached on: usie007@yahoo.com.

Ize-Iyamu family member says they will back Obaseki to win Edo election

A member of the Ize-Iyamu family has said that his family will not be supporting their son, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu in the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in Edo State.

Osazee on Saturday, August 1, 2020, said the family has thrown its full backing behind incumbent Governor Godwin Obaseki to win a second term at the polls.

Osazee Ize-Iyamu, who spoke on behalf of the family according to a report by Daily Trust, said Ize-Iyamu has too much baggage that compromises his candidacy.

“The family is not sentimental about their decision.

“We are unanimous about this and Obaseki is our preferred candidate at this time.

“Ize-Iyamu, compared to the technocrat governor, is no match, by any standards,” he said.

Governor Godwin Obaseki believes he’ll easily get a second term in office by beating his main opponent Ize-Iyamu a second consecutive time.

Osazee credited Obaseki with fixing roads and improving public schools in the state, as well as taking care of workers.

He said, “Members of the Ize-Iyamu family who are retirees have been receiving their monthly pension without stress under Obaseki.

“These are things we did not enjoy when Osagie Ize-Iyamu was chief of staff and secretary to the state government.”

Some members of Obaseki’s family had also recently met with Ize-Iyamu to declare support for him over the governor.

A total of 14 candidates will contest in the election.

Simple Agenda Promises A Secure Edo With Novel Social Welfare Package

By Don Osehobo Ofure

Mr. Godwin Obaseki as Edo State governor sits on a security vote of N900million monthly (N10.8billion Annually), according to the Wikipedia.

It is one of the highest security votes by s

tates in Nigeria. Yet for many residents and even visitors passing by the state, Mr. Godwin Obaseki should be blamed for the very high level of insecurity the state is experiencing today. The state of insecurity is visible, as all parts of the state including the capital, Benin City, Edo north and Edo Central are deeply affected.

Although, relevant sections of the Constitution recognize the Nigeria Police Force as the agency responsible for the provision of security in the states of the federation, Edo is one of many states in the country which can set up organizations to complement the efforts of the police and ensure safety of lives and properties.

After almost three years in office and following public outcry over the spate of violent crimes ravaging the state, Mr. Obaseki said that the government he heads has created new state security architecture he called ‘Operation Wabaizighan’. He said the idea will complement the efforts of the regular police force in the area of combating kidnapping, cult killings, armed robbery, as well as herdsmen/farmers clashes. The organization was designed to be funded under the State Security Trust Fund, with the state government committing N2 billion as seed fund in 2019.

He had listed the components of the architecture to include 50 special security cars fitted with modern communication and security gadgets, 30 Toyota Hilux patrol vans, 30 patrol motor bikes and three Armored Personnel Carriers APC, three ambulances, Integrated Command and Control Centre and five special security check points, to be manned at all the entry and exit points in the state. Others he said are Special Patrol Units (land and waterways); Integrated Electronic City Surveillance Unit, Establishment of a Special Force unit/anti-kidnapping squad, establishment of K-9 unit, establishment of paramedics unit, establishment of the Public Works Volunteers (PUWOV) scheme with 3000 trained and kitted workforce and a community police radio network.

There are also indications that Mr. Obaseki was privy to a strategic document titled, “Contemporary security challenges facing Edo state, Nigeria”, authored by A.B. Jatto et al. In the paper released, the authors undertook an analysis of Nigerian security issues specifically evaluating Edo State, deriving from structured deliberations around the issue of security challenges in Edo State held in London in 2015 involving key stakeholders.

In their findings they said that the State faces serious security challenges arising from natural disasters and climate change, and the rise of sea levels resulting in floods and erosion. In the economic sphere, they said Edo state experiences high unemployment rate due to the absence of key industries and lack of investment and inappropriate models of education. In addition they also identified as an immediate concern, is herdsmen, whilst political security has remained unabated due to the rising numbers of political assassinations in the state. The paper advanced a number of recommendations to address many of these problems, none of which has been applied by Mr. Obaseki.

Many residents of Edo state insist however that it is the responsibility of a responsible government everywhere in the world to protect the lives and property of all its citizens, irrespective of age, faith, sex or vocation, lamenting the state of insecurity in the state. They say Edo people are not safe in their homes and they no longer sleep with their two eyes closed. Their conclusion is that it is a misnomer to hear, daily news of violent crimes, sometimes in broad day light by youths, who should be gainfully employed to help build Edo state. Their verdict, Obaseki has failed!

Worried by the trend, some residents and communities across Edo state have resorted to self-help to check insecurity. From Edo South, citizens have expressed concerns that their relatives abroad even before Covid19 stopped visiting home since Obaseki took office in 2016. They blame the unabated kidnapping, cult-related killings and rape in Edo, is alarming. They repeatedly called on the state government and security agents to intensify efforts at solving the problems to no avail. As one respondent said, “We are concerned about this insecurity, because of the fact that our children living abroad who would love to travel with their parents to Benin City, to experience or fraternize with their relatives and friends are increasingly discouraged”.

It’s the same story in Edo Central where citizens formed a Vigilante to help protect against destruction of lives and properties, farmlands, cash crops and other legitimate means of livelihood in various communities in the locality. They rationalized the vigilance group and said it will be involved in community policing and assisting security agencies to ensure the safety of lives and properties in the area. They also said they will be collaborating with security agencies to address incessant killings, kidnappings, assassinations, armed banditry, raping and destruction of lives and property in the area.

The All Progressive Congress (APC) governorship candidate in Edo State, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has a plan to address the insecurity in Edo state, so citizens can sleep with their two eyes closed and news of violent crimes will be left for the past. He has said that even with the huge sum Mr. Obaseki receives monthly, he, “…has not been able to show commitment to security funding. Every month, the governor collects over N600 million as security vote and gives the police N5 million, not even enough to fuel vehicles”.

He says when he gets elected as Edo state Governor in September; his government will show sincerity in combating crime and make adequate investments in technology to combat crime. This is because Security and Social welfare is the first plank of his covenant with Edo people, he calls SIMPLE AGENDA. The other part is Social Welfare. There is no doubt that the potentials of Edo state are huge in terms of its ability to attract tourists, investments and quality jobs but the current security situation in the state makes the realization of these potentials unrealistic and unattainable.

Many in Diaspora have demonstrated willingness to come home and invest their skills and material resources for the state’s development, given proper incentives, but unfortunately, the current level of insecurity in the state makes the realization of its full economic potentials a pipe dream. In cases where some of the few some braved the odds and came home to explore some investment opportunities, they have fallen victims to either abduction or other violent crimes. But all that will change under the coming APC government led by Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu. The government will provide an enabling environment for Edo people so that they can channel investments back to the state.

Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s plan for securing lives and properties in Edo is a global best practice approach to security delivery, involving all stakeholders in our communities and the use of well-trained and motivated personnel, empowered with cutting edge technology for combating crime, will be adopted to make Edolites sleep with their two eyes closed once again. It will feature a new security architecture that is intelligence-driven, and an integrated state security system that collects information with relevant data from all security agencies and is able to analyze and use it to identify security threats and take appropriate and timely action to deal with them proactively and decisively. Best practice decision making procedures will also be put in place to enhance the rapid response of the security outfit to emerging threats without the usual bureaucratic delays.

The Simple Agenda’s other panacea to finding a lasting and effective solution to the security challenge in Edo, is the important role of the individual and the community. The fears people have about reporting crime because of their personal safety as they do not trust that the people they are reporting to may be complicit in the crime, will be eliminated. In this regard, a functional emergency system as part of the security architecture in the State with an emergency system like 911 will be put in the state. This will be achieved by the relevant state and telecommunication companies, working together.

The Simple Agenda also promise adequate provision of materials and institutional support for the Police and other security agencies in the state, including but not limited to operational vehicles and trucks as well as ultra-modern communication crime-detection and crime-prevention equipment such as the tracking device to detect the location of kidnappers and their hapless victims.

On the Edo State Security Trust Fund, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu will overhaul it in a manner that it will be function as a special purpose vehicle to mobilize adequate funding for security agencies on a sustainable basis. And it plans the Community policing Program involving Neighborhood watch and Vigilante groups in rural and urban areas. Under this plan the state government will partner with all Edo state traditional rulers, village heads, school authorities, civil society and religious organizations in the quest to find a pragmatic and lasting solution to insecurity because safety of lives and property is an ingredient for the state to move forward.

On Social Welfare, it draws from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which Article 22 says that as a member of any society, citizens have the right to Social Security. Social Security has been described as any government scheme that provides monetary or other forms of assistance to people with an inadequate or no income. The article adds that citizens are also entitled to its realization, through deliberate government effort and in accordance with the resources of each state. This is to ensure that he/she enjoys the economic, social and cultural rights indispensable for human dignity and the free development of their personality.

Globally, Social security proponents argue that the society in which a person live should help them to develop and to make the most of all the advantages (culture, work, social welfare) which are offered to them. In more sublime climes, Social security also refer to the action programs of the state intended to promote the welfare of the population through assistance measures guaranteeing access to sufficient resources for food, water and shelter and to promote health and well-being for the population at large and potentially vulnerable segments such as children, widows, persons with disability, the elderly, the sick and the unemployed.

This is what the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate in the Edo governorship election, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu has in mind for Edo state in his Manifesto of Hope called Simple Agenda, which he has promised to, implement, when he gets elected as State governor. As a matter of fact under the very difficult conditions Covid19 imposed on the world, including Edo state such as limitations of movements, loss of jobs, hunger and shortage of food, water and access to healthcare, Pastor Ize-Iyamu earlier this year gave Edo people a glimpse of what to expect with his Social Security Scheme. This was when he unfolded palliatives for vulnerable people across Edo state in the wake of the pandemic. With the lockdown due to restriction of movement of persons across the state as part of measures to reduce the spread of the dreaded Corona virus, he said he acted because of a compelling need to do so.

Covid19 Information, Education and Communication, IEC materials were put on TV and Radio as jingles, in addition to enlightenment leaflets, handbills and flyers sponsored by Pastor Ize-Iyamu, his wife, Professor Idia and their friends. In addition, they distributed Lorry loads of branded Hand Sanitizers and followed it up with foodstuff like Beans, Rice, Salt Garri and even water to the most vulnerable across the 192 wards in the 18 local government areas that make up Edo State. Pastor Ize-Iyamu had made public two emergency phone numbers as help lines for people in dire need of food and water within the state but could not come out. He took the palliative to their homes. The initial target of 4000 families was exceeded, so much that that an uncountable number of families in every part of the state, in every ward and unit became beneficiaries.

It is against this backdrop that Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s plan is to develop a comprehensive Social Security Scheme that will make social welfare programs work for all citizens can be understood. To actualize this he plans to establish a data bank where every resident of Edo State will be allotted a personalized life-time Social Security Number. With this, government will have ready information to enable it plan and provide the social security for children, widows, persons with disability, the elderly, the sick and the unemployed. And as a deliberate state policy to protect vulnerable persons from discrimination and exploitation, the coming Edo state government led by Pastor Ize-Iyamu hopes to facilitate the enactment of appropriate legislation as well implement initiatives to this effect.

Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s Simple Agenda, also plans the establishment of Social welfare offices to handle matrimonial problems and help resolve them through family counseling and mediating services. These will be set up for each of the three senatorial districts across Edo state and backed with the relevant enabling legislation. His policies will protect widows and children of the deceased from harmful traditional practices, harassment and intimidation are also in this lofty package. Also relevant provisions will be made to ensure that widows and children in Edo state have easier access to the Estate, retirement benefits, pension and other assets of their deceased husbands or parents as the case maybe.

A vigorous and proper enlightenment campaign of the provisions of the Child Protection Law of Edo state is also on the cards of the Social Welfare policy of the APC candidate. This will be pursued as a vital step against Child Labor and its twin evil, Child Abuse; not only to discourage its violation but to ensure its enforcement. And for a man who has high regard for Senior citizens like pensioners, who have served the state in various capacities as civil servants, Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s concern for their welfare can be better imagined. This is why his template for the care of pensioners is one of a kind.

Lastly, with a growing population of the qualified but unemployed, especially restive youths, and the failed promise by the current government to create 200,000 jobs since 2016, the Simple Agenda’s solution can better be appreciated. With the creation of the Edo State Employment Bureau (ESEB), responsible for identifying the unemployed and employable in Edo state, and capturing them in a database with their qualifications, the Bureau should be able to make available and at convenient notices, opportunities for employment.

Osehobo is Edo APC Media Council Scribe on Traditional Media in Benin City.

APC queries Obaseki’s readiness to tackle flooding in Edo as NEMA calls for proactive measures

The State Media Campaign Council of the All Progressives Congress for the Edo 2020 Governorship election has queried the readiness of the Obaseki-led government to heed the warnings of the National Emergency Management Agency and put in place proactive measures to avert disaster and destruction of properties in flood-risk areas in the state.

This was in reaction to the prediction of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) and the Nigeria Hydrological Services Agency (NIHSA) which marked Edo State as one of the highly probable flood-risk states in the country.

Mr. John Mayaki, the Chairman of the State Media Campaign Council, in a statement released today accused the state government of emptying the state treasury on sponsorship of nefarious political activities, fake protests, and campaign of calumny in the media while neglecting important governance issues such as the management of flood and the protection of lives and properties.

He said: “The warnings of NEMA, based on the predictions of NIMET and NIHSA, that Edo State is among the highly probable flood-risk states in the coming months, should send alarm bells ringing in Osadebey Avenue as a matter of high priority for the state government. Unfortunately, in Edo State today, the governor at the helm is irresponsible and is only concerned with nefarious political activities and name-calling.”

“Etsako East, Esan South East, Ikpoba Okha, Oredo, Etsako Central, Esan North East, and Ovia North East Local Government Areas were all identified as flood-risk areas of the state in the predictions of NIMET and NIHSA.”

“Already, in these areas and beyond, the sprinkles of rain we have seen in the past few weeks have caused great devastation, in some cases leading to the avoidable loss of lives.”

“While the Godwin Obaseki has not deemed it fit to address these concerns with the seriousness it deserves, or even offer compensation to the families who have lost loved ones, properties, and means of livelihood to a disaster worsened by his complete negligence, he has been paying lip service to the residents of these regions of the state, seeking to deceitfully obtain their support and votes through lies and insincere promises.”

“Yet, we keep getting credible information on the billions of state funds he is handing out to tax collectors and other election cycle politicians who are feasting on his desperation.”

“The Water Storm Project carefully designed to proffer lasting solution to the issue of flooding in the state has been politicized by the Governor in his mischievous quest to spite his predecessor and benefactor. Obaseki has turned into a subject of mindless politics, a project that he jointly commissioned and even sourced for its funding through his personal company.”

“He claims the Water Storm Project belonged to the previous administration, even though nearly all the members of the cabinet of that administration who proposed and worked on the project all hold senior positions in his own administration. Apart from the Governor who was the Chairman of the Economic team under Oshiomhole, his Secretary to State Government, Osarodion Ogie, was the Commissioner for Works and he supervised the project directly.”

“Edo people should not be made victims of Obaseki’s desperation and mindless politics. We are going to mount pressure to ensure that NEMA’s call for proactive measures is heeded.”

Obaseki seeking 20 billion naira loan to fund campaign- Ize Iyamu

*condemns governor for indebting state to fund election

*warns financial institutions against granting fraudulent loans

The candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC, for the Edo State Governorship election, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has raised alarm on alleged plans by the incumbent Governor Godwin Obaseki to obtain a 20 billion naira bond loan from financial institutions to pursue his second-term ambition after allegedly draining the state treasury.

In a statement endorsed by Mr. John Mayaki, the Director of Communication and Media of his Campaign Organization, Ize-Iyamu condemned what he termed as the Governor’s short-sighted and irresponsible indebting of the state for desperate and personally-beneficial political activities, while also warning financial institutions against granting fraudulent loans to the Edo State Government.

He said: “After draining the state treasury with his corrupt 15 billion naira payout to the PDP tax-collectors for the party’s ticket, it has come to our notice that Governor Obaseki is now scurrying around to embark on another borrowing spree with a planned 20 billion naira bond loan from some financial institutions.”

“We find it shocking that after the many tribulations Obaseki’s directionless and incompetent administration has caused in Edo State, the Governor is hatching fresh plans to mortgage the future of the state and her youths with additional loans to fund his desperate political agenda to foist himself on the people for another four years.”

“Obaseki already racked up foreign loans that propelled Edo State to number two on the states with the most indebtedness in the country without any commensurate gain in infrastructure, the economy, and security. Efforts to get the Governor to offer accountability on what he did with the loans and the role his private firm, AfrinInvest, played in their acquisition all fell on deaf ears.”

“It is therefore heartless, irresponsible, and unconscionable for such a man to even conceive obtaining another loan in the tune of 20 billion naira for his political godfathers in the PDP who are cashing in on his desperation and lack of integrity.”

“We want to warn all financial institutions to honor the age-long freeze practice observed during election seasons and possible change of government and not grant any loan to the heartless Godwin Obaseki who appears to now be on a mission to completely sell-out our state and the future of our youths.”

“We are also alerting the EFCC, ICPC, CBN, and other financial regulatory bodies to pay close attention to what is going on in Edo State.”

“It is a known fact that Obaseki has never maintained any close tie with Edo State. He is a Lagos businessman who for long held his own people and state in contempt. Perhaps now that it is obvious that he will be sacked from office in September, his plan is to smash and grab before disappearing back to where he came from.”

“For those of us who have no other place to call home apart from Edo State, these criminal plans and heist against the people will be fiercely resisted as we will not fold our hands and let a desperate stranger destroy our state.”