By Jethro Ibileke
Factional State Secretary of the All Progressives Congress, Lawrence Okah, who’s house was allegedly bombed by unknown persons on Tuesday morning, has accused Governor Godwin Obaseki of plotting to kill him over his second term ambition.
However, the Governor said the resort to violence was the stock in trade of Ize-Iyamu, th National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and their cohorts in the Edo Peoples Movement (EPM).
Speaking while conducting journalists round his residence where the bomb exploded, Okah alleged that some gunmen had last week Tuesday fired at his bedroom.
He said that Governor Obaseki had earlier threatened him and has carried out the threat with the attacks.
“On Tuesday last week, I heard gunshots. They shot at my bedroom. The police came and picked 52 bullets here.
“Yesterday at about 12:30, I heard a noise like bomb. I called my security and they said it looked like a bomb. The one they threw at my bedroom did not detonate. If that one has detonated, you would not have been talking to me.
“That was targeted to my room. If it had exploded it would have been a different story. I just want to advise Mr. Governor. He has threatened me before and he has carried out the threat.
“By the grace of God, we are alive to speak to our people, to let them know what is going on. We pray to God for those we help not to turn around against us. By the grace of God I am one of those that helped this government to be and the Governor has turned now to kill my enemy.”
Responding through through his Special Adviser on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, Obaseki said the state chapter of the APC was peaceful until the EPM and its enablers commenced their nefarious activities across the state.
According to him, “We are quite flustered that Comrade Adams Oshiomhole has not been able to rein in his people in the face of the reconstitution of the All Progressives Congress (APC) National Reconciliation Committee, tasked to restore lasting peace in the party both in the state and across the country.
“We are committed to peace and would do right by the people of Edo State by continually supporting all credible means to arrive at a lasting peace in the state.
“At the same time, we want to state clearly that Ize-Iyamu, Comrade Oshiomhole and their cohorts are the common denominators of political violence in Edo State.
“On the 19th of October, 2014, this same Ize-Iyamu announced that his house along Dennis Osadebey Way, GRA, Benin City, where his wife carries out her dental practice, was bombed and at that time, he pointedly stated that Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, who was then Governor of the state, was responsible for the attack.
“From that time till now, there has been a cessation of the use of explosives and other dangerous weapons in causing mayhem and heating up the political space in the state.
“It is therefore rather curious that with the same Ize-Iyamu coming back into the political space in the last three months, extreme political violence has resurfaced with bombs going off in parts of the state and gunmen attacking politically-exposed persons.”
He continued, “We have stated before that the EPM, under the sponsorship of Oshiomhole, Ize-Iyamu and others, having lost out of the political power play in the state and failed repeatedly in their inordinate quest to seize power from Governor Godwin Obaseki through undemocratic means, have now resorted to violence to create a sense of a breakdown of law and order with the intent of forcing the declaration of a State of Emergency in the state.
Obaseki urged the Presidency and the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) to call Comrade Oshiomhole, Ize-Iyamu and their cohorts in the EPM to order so that the destructive descent to violence does not erode the good legacies that have been built over the years by the APC in Edo State.
He also assured Edo people of government’s resolve to maintain law and order, and ensure that the peace and safety in the state is not threatened by whatever means.
Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu had told our correspondent that the explosion was politically motivated.
“There is no doubt that this action was politically motivated, this cannot be the work of armed robbers, it’s not the work of kidnappers, it’s not the work of children. Itwas a deliberate act of political wickedness.
“You know that the State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki and Philip Shaibu and some top government officials have been in the forefront of issuing threats that they are going to deal decisively with those who are opposed to their second term ticket. I’ve never heard where you get second term ticket by threat and are now throwing bombs and killing people,” he said.
Edo police spokesman, DSP Chidi Nwabuzor, could not be reached for comments as at press time.
Spokesman to Oshiomhole, Mr. Simon Ebegbulem, did not pick calls made to his cell phone.
He also did not respond to text messages sent to him.