The Oba of Benin, Omo N’Oba Nedo Uku Akpolokpolo Oba Ewuare II, has decried the political happenings in Edo State, ahead of the governorship election on September 22, 2020.
While maintaining that he remained apolitical as a royal father, he advised that politicians in the state must do away with the “twin evils of godfatherism and consensus candidacy.”
The Oba stated this in a statement by Frank Irabor, secretary to the Benin Traditional Council, on Thursday.
The statement added that there was
no truth in speculations on social media that the monarch had prevailed on some governorship aspirants to step down for one of the aspirants in the upcoming primary election of a particular political party.
According to the release, the Oba’s desire and prayer remained that “God and our ancestors should give us a governor that will accord respect to traditional institution, develop this state and provide food on the table for the masses.”
The statement read in detail, “HRM has said times without number that the palace of the Oba of Benin does not get involved in partisan politics…
“The Omo N’¹Oba strongly advises that in order to eschew recurrent socio-political conflict that seems to constantly ravish the state, making Edo people a laughing stock to the rest of the country on how politicians manage the affairs of Edo people, our Edo political actors must eradicate the twin evil of political vices of godfatherism and consensus candidacy. The two practices seem antithetical to the very fundamental basis of democracy.
“Let everybody take note that the palace is very wary of the imposition of candidates when only certain individuals want, but the majority of the people do not want. ‘Ghana must go’ politics should end in the state. Politicians should stop cashing in on the poor masses and exploiting them for their votes.
“We believe all qualified aspirants in any elective office should be given a level-playing field, for democracy to develop to the next level in Nigeria. Political actors should mature up and learn not to wash their dirty linen in public.”
The crisis rocking the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has since heated up the politics in the state.
The APC disqualification of Governor Godwin Obaseki for its primary election to the governor’s dumping of the party to the Appeal Court real reaffirming Adams Oshiomhole’s suspension as APC national chairman, among other have made the state a subject of discussion recently.
However, the monarch urged politicians preparing for their governorship primary elections to exercise the highest standards of maturity and sportsmanship.
He emphasised that the desire to bring about the best for the people of the state should not be sacrificed on the altar of intolerance, rumour mongering and fake news.