Governor Godwin Nogheghase Obaseki and his deputy, Phillip Shaibu have been inaugurated for a second and final term in office.
The ceremony which differed largely from the usual, because of the COVID-19 pandemic was conducted by the State Chief Judge, Hon. Justice Esther Edigin, at the Hard Court of the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City.
Deputy Governor Shaibu flanked by his wife, was administered his oath at exactly 11:48am. Also flanked by his wife and First Lady, Betsy, Governor Obaseki took his oath at exactly 11:59am.
The duo by the acceptance of their Making Edo Great Again (MEGA) programme, victory at the September 19 Governorship elections and inauguration Thursday; are returning erstwhile opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to the Government House on Dennis Osadebey Avenue for the first time since 2008.
Governor Obaseki had four years ago, been elected on the platform of now opposition, All Progressives Congress (APC). Having fallen out with Adams Oshiomhole; his predecessor-in-office and former National Chairman of the party, he was denied a chance to seek re-election on the APC platform and was “forced to defect” to the PDP.
His closest challenger in the 2016 and 2020 elections, Osagie Ize-Iyamu, declined numerous calls on him to congratulate the Governor, even after his party and the President congratulated the winner of the election.
Although heavily characterised by bitter campaigns and pre-election violence, the final event was described as one of the country’s fairest elections in the recent past. The outcome is however, been contested at the State Election Petition Tribunal by the Action Peoples Party (APP), Action Alliance (AA), Allied Peoples’ Movement (APM), the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) and the Action Democratic Party (ADP).
Temidayo Taiwo-Sidiq is a Political Journalist, Analyst and Social Change Advocate with major interest in Nigerian Politics, Governance and Sports.