By Simon Ebegbulem
BENINâ€”THE leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Edo State has declared that the consistent attack on the former Chairman of the partyâ€™s Board of Trustees, Chief Tony Anenih, by Governor Adams Oshiomhole, was a ploy to divert the attention of the people fromÂ alleged non-performance of the administration.
But the governor, who reactedÂ to allegations of non-performance by the PDP, while fielding questions from newsmen during the one year anniversary celebration of his administration weekend, said the PDP ruined the state for eight years and, as a result, everything was in bad shape when his administration came in.
Chairman of the PDP in the state, Chief Dan Orbih, in a press conference in Benin City, asked the state government to account for the balance of N25 billion of the N52.32 billion which came to it as statutory allocations and internally generated revenue from November 2008 to October 2009, after the government said it saved N13.5 billion and spent N14.5 billion on salaries and a few capital projects.
Chief Orbih, who was flanked by some chieftains of the party, that included the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Mr. Zakawanu Garuba, Senator Odion Ugbesia; former Presidential Adviser, Professor Julius Ihonvbere, and Representatives Friday Itulah, Johnson Abolagba and Abass Braimah, said the government had patched only 32 spots on roads as against the governmentâ€™s claim that it had rehabilitated and constructed 32 roads.
Orbih said what the party could credit to Governor Oshiomhole in his first one year in office were demarcation, planting of flowers at questionable cost and demolition of poor massesâ€™ structures withoutÂ compensation to deserving victims.
Orbih pointed out that Oshiomholeâ€™s consistent attack on former chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees, Chief Tony Anenih, was just a ploy to shift attention away from the administrationâ€™s non-performance, adding that the same bad elements that ruled the state in the past were the same persons who took over the reins of leadership under the Oshiomhole-led government.
â€œSuffice it to say that for the past ten years and over, it has been the same clique, the same recycled faces and the same set of people that have ruled the state.”
â€œParadoxically, for fear of facing their iniquities, they rallied round and constituted what is today known as Action Congress in the state.
â€œThis explains why Edo people are not expecting anything good from Adams Oshiomholeâ€™s government,â€ he stated.
But Governor Oshiomhole, in his response, said it was unfortunate that the leadership of the PDP in the state could talk now, when in actual fact, they destroyed the state during their stay in power for over eight years.
â€œIt is unfortunate that they are just running their mouth today and most of the figures they are calling are over exaggerated. But we will shut them up with our work.
â€œWe are happy that they even agreed that we are doing something, but it is just that we are bringing people from Lagos. But it is better to bring people from Lagos who are Nigerians than bringing Lebanese.
â€œOsunbor was using Lebanese to work here then but none of them saw any wrong in that. They started tackling and I will continue to tackle them because what they did to our people in Edo State was wicked and inhuman,â€ he said.