By Kassim Afegbua
Last Friday, November 30th, the Sultan of Sokoto and President General of the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, received a Doctoral Degree from Igbinedion University, Okada.
The Sultan used the opportunity of the visit to pay Governor Adams Oshiomhole a courtesy call at the Dennis Osadebey Government House. Suleiman Abdulmalik captures the highlights
Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, the Governor of Edo State has a gift of the garb. At times, he turns serious issues into comical scenes, leaving his listener reeking in laughter and exhilaration. At times also, he is caught up in his own wits and often times tries to wriggle out of it using his gift of oratory as a weapon.
But in general terms, Comrade Oshiomhole is a reporter’s delight any day. He displayed his comedian skills on Friday, November 30, 2012 when the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Saad Abubakar 111 paid him a courtesy call in Edo Government House as part of protocol, during the conferment of Doctoral Degree on the Sultan by the management ofIgbinedionUniversity, Okada. Asked to join the Sultan in the photography section after the courtesy call, and tucked in-between two hefty men, Comrade Oshiomhole “protested”, asking the Sultan for protection, because the duo of the Sultan and His Royal Highness, the Aidonogie of South-Ibie, Oba Kelvin Danesi easily shielded away the diminutive stature of the Governor.
Not done with his “protest”, he had remarked that Paparazzi have a way of deploying their dictatorship. Hear him; “each time you people have opportunity to take a snap shot, you have a way of ordering us around, because we can’t complain. But since I have the Sultan here, I will present your issue to the Palace for proper adjudication”. It was a gale of laughter all through.
Few people now remember that the Comrade Governor is a properKadunabrought up and can well be described as a “Kaduna Boy” because according to him, he knew much of Kaduna than he knew his home place of Auchi. He started his career as a unionist in Kaduna textiles which later nurtured the firebrand in him and moulded his world view about the country Nigeria and its developmental struggles. According to him; “Kadunafor me offered me a platform to exhibit my talents and potentials in protesting about bad administration and leadership.
It was my true home, because it was later in life that I started getting close to my real origin. The issue of settler and indigene was never thought of. I was elected to lead the textiles workers not because of where I come from or which religion I belong, but because they saw in me the potentials to lead the workers for improved bargaining and welfare.
That is the beauty of Kaduna, and I am proud to say it anytime that I am a true “Kaduna Boy”. Speaking further on why he considered the Sultan’s visit and award as very special and deserving, the Comrade Governor used the opportunity to thank the Sultan for the leadership role he has been playing in ensuring that there is peace and stability in the country.
“My dear Sultan, I want to thank you very passionately from the bottom of my heart and on behalf of Edo People, for your several positive interventions in the affairs of the nation. Growing up in those days in
Kaduna, there was nothing like Christians and Muslims crises. The atmosphere was convivial and the exchanges and friendships were mutual and robust. We lived like brothers and sisters without caring a hoot where we come from. The idea of a one
was profound. I want to thank you for all that you have been doing alongside other men of faith in helping to unite us irrespective of our tribal and religious affiliations”, Oshiomhole added. Earlier, the Sultan had thanked Oshiomhole for appointing two Nigerians of Northern extraction to serve in his administration and help drive governance in the State.
In his remarks during the courtesy call, the Sultan used the opportunity to advise the Comrade Governor to remain focused in the course of discharging his responsibilities as the elected Governor of the State and not of the Party.
He noted that even though the Governor ran under the platform of a Party, he should see himself as father to all because he is the leader of the State. “I want to congratulate you for your inauguration as the elected Governor of Edo State to serve another term, I said another term, not second term”.
Of course, the Sultan’s emphasis of another term was not lost on the people, since Comrade Oshiomhole still has a lot to contribute to the unity, stability and development of the nation.
The Sultan did not stop there. He went further to advice that the people must continue to pray for the unity and stability of the country adding that we are better off as a nation with several opportunities than splitting into several cleavages.
According to him, the Governor should see the entire State as his constituency and should extend hands of fellowship to those who contested with him, in order to move the State forward.
While appreciating the Governor for the wonderful achievements recorded so far in the State, he also used the opportunity to express his gratitude to the Chief of Staff, Honourable Patrick Obahiagbon for the warm reception he received before the arrival of the Comrade Governor.