The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike, has accused Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, of betrayal in the 2020 governorship election that saw him reelected for a second term in office.
Wike made the allegations while speaking at a New Year luncheon he organised in his country home, Rumueprikom, in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the Rivers State on Sunday.
Premium Politics recalls that Obaseki won re-election for a second term by defeating APC Osagie Ize-Iyamu and several minor party candidates. Obaseki received 57.3% of the votes, while Ize-Iyamu received 41.6%.
Obaseki and Wike, who was the governor of Rivers State then, before recently becoming FCT minister after dumping his party’s candidate in the 2023 presidential election, Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party, for the All Progressives Congress Bola Tinubu, had previously engaged in a war of words.
In March 2022, Obaseki accused Mr Wike and the PDP National Vice Chairman, South-south, Dan Orbih, of trying to destabilise the party in Edo, after Wike demanded the punishment of Edo Deputy Governor, Philip Shaibu, for threatening to leave the party.
“Governor Wike and his collaborators, headed by Chief Dan Orbih, in Edo State, will not succeed in destabilising the PDP in Edo State as they did other states like Cross River just to secure delegates to actualize his alleged personal ambition to run for the presidency in 2023.
“In Edo, we don’t accept political bullies and overlords and historically, we have demonstrated our capacity to unshackle ourselves and dethrone bullies and highhanded leaders,” Obaseki said.
Reigniting the rift two years later, Wike claimed that Obaseki allegedly betrayed all the agreements they had to pave the way for his second term.
He said, “It is not everything you invest that you will reap. Even established companies crumble. You cannot say I did this but I am not benefitting. God knows why it happens the way it happens.
“What is important in life is to give God the glory that you are alive to see what is happening. When a man is dead, he doesn’t know what is happening.
“You will be able to advise your children and your friends. When the heat was on in Edo, this young man was a frontrunner in the Edo Governorship election.
“PDP leaders came to me in Port Harcourt from 6pm to 6am the next day. I told the young man with Dan Orbih to withdraw and not to run for the governorship. He was crying and we agreed on what would be given to their group.”
Wike stated further, “He was to be refunded the money he spent and to get four commissioners but not one was kept. We said okay you would run for Senate in the next election. But not one was kept.
“But the next thing was blackmail that Wike wants to control this. But you didn’t know what Wike wanted to control when you came and held a meeting with me from 6 pm to 6 am. It was all about blackmail. That is what you see in politics.
“You must have shock absorbers. President Tinubu told me when we were meeting that politics and betrayal are the same mother and father. If you don’t want to be betrayed, don’t enter politics.
“So prepare yourself that it will happen. I am fully prepared because I know it is one of the things President Tinubu taught me. I am laying this foundation so that some of you who are worried should not be. That is life for you. You must prepare yourself to know that these things happen. I have preached and continue to preach for unity and for peace in this state”.