• en

Impeaching Shaibu Is Demarketing PDP Candidate in Edo State, Says Liborous Oshoma

Oshoma says Obaseki and Shaibu’s rift is due to little clarity regarding the roles of a governor and his deputy.

A constitutional lawyer Liborous Oshoma, has asserted that the impeachment of the former deputy governor of Edo State, Philip Shaibu is a way of demarketing the 2024 governorship candidate of the Peoples’ Democratic Party in Edo State, stating that the party has already become a house divided against itself.

Oshoma in an interview with ARISE NEWS on Tuesday, opined that regardless of the rift between Obaseki, governor of Edo state and his former deputy, the duo would have found ways to resolve it or managed it till the end of their tenure for the sake of the upcoming election.

“Obaseki wants a man with the mindset of being privileged to sit with him. I can also say this authoritatively because I have spoken with some former commissioners also, the mentality of governors in Nigeria, even at Excos meetings, some of them dare not talk, and then the governor comes, reels out decisions and that’s all. In some cases when you try to disagree with the governor, your colleagues will be asking you, do you mean you are tired with the job?

“No matter the offence of Philip Shaibu, who had quarrels with his former principal because of this ticket, impeaching him is a way of demarketing the PDP candidate because for me, the PDP in Edo state is already a house divided against himself. No matter the misunderstanding, the governor should have allowed the PDP to go one-on-one consistently with Shaibu to see how issues can be resolved and then manage him outside the government house you have kept him, for the sake of election.”

The lawyer also stated that by this action, the governor may have incurred a negative repercussion, citing the inexperience of the newly sworn-in deputy governor, Omobayo Godwins.

“Indirectly, it is like the governor is digging the grave of his own candidate. The current deputy governor, apart from the current position, how well is he known in the political circle in Edo North? How well can he wrestle votes from that area? The governor is biting more than he can chew and it might affect them negatively.”

Oshoma also attributed the crisis between Obaseki and Shaibu to the lack of clarity in the definition of duties between the governor and deputy governor roles. He said without such definition, the deputy governor’s position remains vulnerable to the governor’s discretion, effectively rendering it subordinate.

“I listened to Philip Shaibu and he said that all of this is a result of his ambition which according to him, every Nigerian has a right to. But I want to differ a little bit. Some of us have been clamoring for a clear-cut distinction of duties between the office of the governor and the deputy governor, so that the office of the deputy governor can be properly insulated and protected.

“But in the absence of that, once you occupy that office, you occupy it at the mercy of the governor. So, if you have an ambition as a politician, you also need to know when the drum beaters have left you, that’s the best time to die politically, instead of waiting to be disgraced out of the office. It is obvious that it was his ambition but that ambition should have been subsumed when the governor told him not to because you know you can’t fight him and win, knowing fully well that the house of assembly is only an appendage of the office of the governor the way it is practiced here in Nigeria.

“The moment you win an election, the running mate now becomes a spare tyre because he functions at your mercy. You can decide to relinquish and relegate him to the background just like Obaseki did to Shaibu just because he was ambitious. He moved him completely out of the government house and gave him an obscure unfurnished building. But, that’s not the intention of the law. The intention is for the two of them to function as co-pilots. In this same vein, seeing consistently that our governors have become emperors, loyalty is only defined by them.”

He further called for a reexamination of Nigeria’s constitutional framework, with the aim of fostering a more equitable distribution of power and protecting the integrity of key governmental positions.

Chioma Kalu

Follow us on: