Who instigated the attack on Governor Godwin Obaseki and Oba Rilwan Akiolu of Lagos in Iyamho, Edo state on Saturday when they came to visit former governor Adams Oshiomhole in his country home?
The jury is out to determine the culprit as Oshiomhole and the Deputy Governor of Edo State, Philip Shaibu traded blames.
Oshiomhole in a statement blamed Shaibu, alleging that the hoodlums who carried out the attack were the same thugs who invaded the university community on the orders of the Deputy Governor of the state, Philip Shaibu.
But Shaibu has promptly denied the accusation, with his spokesman providing an alibi: the deputy governor was in the convoy attacked by the hoodlums, asking rhetorically, whether he would have organised his own attack.
“The Governor, his deputy, Oba of Lagos and their entourage were at the gate of the National Chairman of our great party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole to pay him the usual homage since they were in his domain.
“Surprisingly, the large crowd that gathered at the gate brutally attacked the convoy, destroying three cars in the process.
“The convoy had to quickly turn and came back to the varsity campus. So, how did the Deputy Governor cause it, could he have arranged his own attack?
“In fact, they were there on the invitation of the Comrade himself.”The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki has condemned the attack on him, the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu, Chancellor of the Edo University, Iyahmo, Dr. Aderemi Makanjuola and other guests at the residence of former Governor of the State and National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.
But Oshiomhole in heaping the blame on Shaibu said tension in the community started last Friday when Shaibu imported thugs into the community with a view to intimidate political opponents.
Oshiomhole’s Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Simon Ebegbulem said Oshiomhole left the convocation lecture on Saturday through the back to avoid being attacked by the thugs who laid siege at the entrance gate of the university.
Oshiomhole said he and other guests were already in the hall when at about 11:30am, the deputy governor stormed the University with over 200 Okada riders and thugs.
“Security operatives accosted them at the gate and refused them entrance. The thugs started threatening the security operatives who insisted the deputy governor can enter the venue but they will not allow the thugs to gain access.
“Following their threats the security operatives tear gassed the thugs and the deputy governor. The thugs were dispersed while the deputy governor joined other dignitaries at the venue. This created tension already in the small community.
“However, after the event, Comrade Oshiomhole invited the Oba of Lagos, the Chancellor and others for lunch at his country home which is right opposite the university. Consequently, he left instruction at the gate that he was expecting these respected leaders.
“So when the visitors came, the governor drove in a bus with other officials but following the incident that occurred earlier where thugs sponsored by the deputy governor invaded the university, Iyamho youths barricaded the gate of the national chairman with a view to protecting him against any harm.
“Unfortunately, these youths sighted Andrew Momodu, Osaigbovo Iyoha in the bus which conveyed the governor to Oshiomhole’s residence. They decided to stop them from entering the compound because these were the same people who led the thugs that attacked Oshiomhole’s residence in Benin City penultimate week.
“While this confusion was on, the thugs brought by the deputy governor started destroying the vehicles belonging to Oshiomhole’s kinsmen. I want to state clearly that the vehicles destroyed were not in the convoy of the governor. The thugs targeted the vehicles belonging to Oshiomhole’s relations and friend and destroyed them. Thank God for the intervention of soldiers and other security operatives who came to restore peace.
“This would not have happened if not for the thugs who invaded the community loyal to the deputy governor.
Governor Obaseki, who has been fighting a political war of survival with Oshiomhole deplored the attack.
He said it was shameful it took place at the residence of the National Chairman of the ruling party in the state and at the national level.
“It is very unfortunate that we can’t feel safe in the house of our National Chairman. I am not sure that if I visit the Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) that they will attack me the way they did in the house of the APC National Chairman.”
“It is unfortunate that things have degenerated to this extent. But we will continue to sue for peace. We cannot afford to lose the gains of the last three years. We will continue to pursue peace,” he added.
Oshiomhole, meanwhile has apologised to Oba Akiolu and the new chancellor of Edo State University, Makanjuola for the embarrassment.