Were Nigerians critically waiting for Tinubu’s comment on the Edo State drama?

Tinubu and Obaseki

‘In defense of constitutional democracy: The recent actions of the Governor of Edo State represent the gravest possible assault on constitutional democracy and the rule of law and escalation of violence and tension in the state he purports to govern.’  these are the words of Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the National Leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC) over the political unrest in Edo State.

Tinubu, reacting to the crisis rocking the Edo state house of assembly, alleged that Governor Godwin Obaseki is working against the interest of the Edo people. He also said after denying elected members of the house of assembly from being inaugurated for over a year, Obaseki allegedly mobilized thugs to frustrate their inauguration. According to Tinubu, the governor who defected to the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) from the APC, has committed an impeachable offense as he branded Obaseki a dictator.

For context, Governor Obaseki had made an unconstitutional bid to sideline majority lawmakers-elect, who he felt were not aligned to his political ideology. Genuine efforts by both Federal House of Representatives and Nigerian Senate to seek a peaceful resolution to the crisis did not entertain the cooperation of the Governor as he also threatened on one occasion that he will not be available to receive the Federal legislators.

In spite of his antagonistic attitude towards both the Federal House of Representatives and the Nigerian Senate, the lawmakers still proceeded on their fact-finding mission to Edo State. They submitted their reports to their respective chambers and advised the Governor to issue a fresh proclamation and inaugurate all the 24 members. This advice also fell to deaf ears as the Governor resorted to litigation to prune the process of reconciliation. Even the attempts by some other Governors to resolve the issues peacefully also met with a rebuff by Governor Obaseki.

Tinubu’s statement suggests that Obaseki had made ridicule of democracy. However, a few Nigerians have jumped on the thread with some calling him out for hypocrisy while others applauded him for his apt criticism of the crisis in Edo State especially as it concerns the governor.

Tinubu was grossly reminded that Obaseki was only playing out some lessons learned from Oshiomhole’s political crisis handbook as they reminded him that similar things happened when Oshiomhole was in power.

It is, however, quite surprising that it took Governor Obaseki and the Edo State crisis for Tinubu to come out of his shell. For those criticizing Tinubu’s comment, they questioned why he was silent on cases that reiterated the level of corruption that thrives in Nigeria. Some also debated his silence on the insurgencies in Southern Kaduna, pointing out that his thread was only coming up because his political godfatherism in Edo State is being threatened.

There are lots of valid points to take note of on this matter, but it very imperative to point out that if Obaseki has constantly pissed an assault on the law and order for the people of Edo State and the elected lawmakers, then Tinubu’s thread shouldn’t anger anyone.

 

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