By Onozure Dania, Benin
A coalition of leaders and elders in Owan and Akoko-Edo Local Government Area of Edo State, yesterday, faulted the senatorial ambition of former Governor Adams Oshiomhole, saying it was the rotational arrangement that has been the hallmark of Edo North senatorial district.
In an open letter, National Coordinators of the group, Victor Umoru and Henry Ijegba, representing Akoko-Edo and Owan, said: “Oshiomhole is a national leader and must not get himself entangled in such selfish decisions. It will be an aberration for a man regarded as selfless to jettison the usual zoning arrangement for his political sustenance.
“Oshiomhole has made his mark in Edo politics and the outcome of the last governorship election in 2020 was enough to let him know his service is no more required.
“Kingmakers don’t struggle to become kings. Oshiomhole should be proud that he was able to produce a performing senator like Francis Alimikhena. The incumbent senator was the saving grace of Edo North in the last governorship election.
“All Progressives Congress, APC, would have collapsed since the 2020 election if not for the goodwill of Alimikhena. If we must remove him, then we demand explanation why an Etsako man should also replace him.”
“The people of Owan and Akoko -Edo are part of Edo North and if Oshiomhole joins the senatorial race, both Owan and Akoko-Edo, irrespective of political parties, will use our PVC to embarrass him. It is safe to queue behind the incumbent Senator, who is seeking a third and last term than to endure Oshiomhole, who may seek to remain in the Senate for a lifetime as a political retirement home like other former governors.
“If the incumbent Senator Alimikhena must go, then the alternative naturally, cannot be another Etsako Senator. An incumbent that is performing can serve out as many terms but at his point of exit, the tide cannot swing to the same ethnic group, it is not done. Senator David Mark, George Akume, and others are good examples.
“The incumbent Edo North Senator is the best that Edo North has ever produced in terms of performance and development of the senatorial district. Every community in Edo North has one infrastructure or the other. Seeking to replace the incumbent Senator, who has impacted the senatorial district on all fronts, will lead to the final death of APC in Edo North.
“We will rather support Senator Alimikhena for his last term than support another Etsako man against the interest of the Owan and Akoko- Edo People. Those pushing the former APC National Chairman are either seeking to divide Etsako against or bury APC in Edo North.”