The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has said his administration will continue to explore all avenue in resolving the crisis rocking the state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The governor said this while responding to the call by the President of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria and Archbishop of Benin Archdiocese, Most Rev Dr. Augustine Akubeze, who in a homily, urged the governor to settle grievances with his predecessor and National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.
On Sunday, Governor Obaseki joined other well-wishers and dignitaries to celebrate with the Deputy Governor, Rt. Hon Comrade Philip Shaibu during Comrade Shaibu’s 50th birthday thanksgiving at St Paul’s Catholic Church, in Benin City.
Obaseki said he had in the past heeded to the call by the Archbishop to make peace with the APC National Chairman, noting, “The last time I was in this church was during the 80th birthday of our elder statesman, Chief John Odigie and the priest raised certain concerns. To tell you how seriously we take your views, I went to Iyamoh with members of my cabinet and political party to pursue peace. I want to assure you that we will continue to pursue peace.”
“We have been in this situation for more than six months and it is very difficult to change people’s views. One of my Commissioner said, ‘you can only have a current champion and you cannot have a permanent Champion,” the governor said.
He added that it was difficult for members of the Edo State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to accept that godfatherism is good for the Nigerian politics, noting, “If we said 12 years ago that godfatherism is not good for our politics, 12 years after, it is difficult for us to change and accept that godfatherism is now good.
“These are some of the challenges we face. But we will continue to pray and seek peace,” he said.
Obaseki implored the church to appeal to the members of the Edo State House of Assembly who were yet to resume their duties to do so.
Earlier in his homily, Archbishop Augustine Akubeze urged for an end to the political crises rocking the Edo State chapter of the APC, adding that the crisis does not benefit political leaders and the masses.
He appealed to Governor Obaseki and Comrade Adams Oshiomhole to bring down the walls of divisions and work together for the people of the state, noting, “Let there be an end to the fractions and suspension of leaders in the APC. Few selfish people benefit from conflicts. Overheating of the political space have to stop.”
He also urged Christians to continue with their righteous deeds and renounce all forms of evil.
In their remarks, the Deputy Governor and Secretary to the State Government, Osarodion Ogie Esq. urged the church to continue to pray for peace in the state.