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(Opinion) Obaseki needs to handle the opposition with more tolerance

When I first came across the story that the right of occupancy of pasIze-iyamu's farmland was been revoked by the Edo State government, I doubted it. I guess my doubts were based on my lack of awareness of similar actions by the state government.

I was shocked to learn from the Vanguard Newspaper's report that "lands owned by the former deputy governor of the state, Dr Pius Odubu, former Secretary to State Government (SSG) and the current members representing Owan Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Prof Julius Ihonvbere, sports enthusiast and marketer Mike Itemuagbo and others have been revoked by the governor and structures existing destroyed for what the government said is for public interest".

My mind then quickly went back to the Tony Kabaka episode. Mr Kabaka was a vocal critic of the Obaseki government. In very controversial circumstances, the governor demolished his hotel in Benin city in what many consider as an action propelled by politics of bitterness.

Concerning the revoked properties belonging to Pius Odubu, and others, the government had said "On December 21, 2020, Governor Obaseki, revoked the C-of-Os of 11 government property within the Government Reserved Area (GRA) which were allotted to former political office holders, companies and private individuals as parting gifts on the eve of the exit of former Governor Oshiomhole from office. One of the properties was allocated to Governor Obaseki and was also revoked" (see Vanguard of March 26, 2021).

In his reaction Prof. Julius Ihonvbere had stated "I don’t have much to tell Obaseki, he has already destroyed the building but he should remember that it was his administration that approved my Certificate of Occupancy after I paid all the necessary fees during his administration".

The Prof's statement continued “there is a building behind mine, why did he leave that? There is another building adjacent to mine, owned by a former National President of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, why did he also not revoke that if he is claiming the lands for the state? That is why I said what he is doing is political vendetta".

Some questions are agitating my mind (and I guess it is not only me). Some of these questions are: Why are most of the politicians been affected by the government's actions members of the opposition? Is it only these strong APC loyalists that have properties in places that government is interested in?

Like some people are asking on the social media spaces, does his deputy, his Secretary to the State Government and others not have lands of interest to the government? Are all the lands in Edo state used up? Why is the governor focusing on revoking already occupied lands?

Again, has the Governor put to good use the lands that the state has earlier revoked and demolished structures from? Has he used them for something more productive? If no, why is he after Ize-iyamu's farmland? It is even said that the farmland that the government revoked from Ize-iyamu has been used for training purposes in the past.

We have also seen what the government did to a clan allegedly because of politics. Obaseki's government withdrew the appointment of HRH Benjamin Ikhani as the Clan Head of Uzanu. This is Prince Clem Agba's clan. I believe many of my readers can relate. The Governor did not stop there, he when further to approve the revocation of the South East Uneme clan in Estako East LGA.

Mr Obaseki should be more tolerant with the opposition in the state. There is a lot of work to do in Edo state and people are already complaining about the slow pace of governance in the state. The governor should realise that four years is not forty years. He should please channel all his energy to developing state. He should handle the opposition with more tolerance so that his government will not be tagged a tyrannical government.

Content created and supplied by: AuthenticAidokhai (via Opera News )

Benin Julius Ihonvbere Mike Itemuagbo Obaseki Pius Odubu

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