By Gabriel Olawale
Former Chief Press Secretary to Governor Godwin Obaseki and All Progressives Congress, APC Chieftain, Prince John Mayaki, has berated the Obaseki-led administration over its poor handling of the fire incident that took place at the Santana market where over 300 shops were razed down and millions of goods lost.
He described the actions of the government as a direct cause of the severe loss suffered by the poor traders.
“Governor Godwin Obaseki has all the time in the world to attend political events and dispatch agencies to destroy the homes and properties of his political opponents in the state, but one week after yet another devastating fire incident in the state, the governor has been sitting on his hands, showing no signs of seriousness in helping the victims to rebuild their lives or putting in place effective measures to help avert another disaster.
“It should be noted that the Santana market fire is one too many since Godwin Obaseki took office. The economy of the state has been shaken to its core by these avoidable disasters that razed shops and wiped out millions of investments at the Uwelu Spare Parts Market, Phil Hallmark Shopping mall, PZ Market in Ikpoba-Okha LGA, Evbotubu Market in Egor Local Government and many others.”
“What all of these fire incidents have in common is the non-appearance of the Edo State fire service, even after repeated distress calls from helpless victims. On one of such occasions, the residents had to arrange for a firefighting truck all the way from Delta state to combat a raging fire in Edo State because our fire service lacks modern equipment to function and is sometimes hindered by things as mundane as fuel to respond to emergencies.”
“It is therefore not an overreach to accuse the governor and his incompetence as both directly responsible for the incessant fire outbreaks and devastating destruction of livelihoods.”
“Since the beginning of his administration, he has been making promises and setting up committees after committees to supposedly investigate fire outbreaks and come up with preventive measures. However, these committees and their investigations have ended up like his popular MOUs as empty charades and ineffectual paperwork.”
“What we have today in Edo state is a governor who has refused to purchase single firefighting equipment for the state’s agency despite a consistent outbreak of fires, but is more than eager to dedicate millions to the purchase of demolition trucks for the destruction of his opponent’s properties in the state.”
“Evidently, Obaseki cares little for the people and is no longer interested in public service. In his bid to centralize power, even at the cost of the rule of law, and pursuit of a second term despite a clear record of failure, he has relegated governance to the background and the people are left to grapple in broad daylight, in search of hope and succor.”