I received the news of what I will like to refer to as the rejection of the congratulatory message from pastor Ize-yamu and comrade Adams Oshiomole with rumbling in my stomach.
I do not know governor Godwin Obaseki one on one. But a lot of behavioral negativities precedes him in the public space, especially regarding his person as unfriendly and unforgiving. It is on this premise that I want to situate my thoughts.
Political foes are not enemies but mere opponents, just like in a football match. After 90 minutes of hostilities during the match, both winners and losers embrace each other. Some who just gave themselves hard tackles (who were probably members of the same team previously) are seen chatting as they walk away to the dressing room. However if there is no clear winner after 90 minutes, especially in a final, the hostility continue, the hugging is suspended. Another 30 minutes is added. If there is still no winner, The rule says a penalty shootout will be use to decide the winner. when a winner eventually emerge we then see the hugging despite the escruciating match.
The last Edo State governorship election can be likened to the analogy given above. Dissatisfied, pastor Ize-yamu pursuance of his fondamental human right as enshrined in the 1999 Constitution as amended approached the appeal Court for clearification of some issues, The outcome of two Judges to one against him gave hope. Hope, you will all agree is a good thing. He went to the Supreme Court, again he lost.
The lose at the supreme Court just like the penalty shootout at the end of the football match signaled the end of all election matters. It is time for hugging. Pastor Osagie Ize-yamu brought out the olive branch. Instead of just a private letter to the governor he wrote two. Knowing that Obaseki will likely read meanings to a private letter by saying pastor Ize-yamu is congratulating me in private, the amiable pastor Ize-yamu, saw through him, he humbled himself and went public with a second letter to let everyone know that he bears no bitterness or animosity against his eastwhile opponent. Besides, the governor was too quick to lash on the public letter to try and rubbish the pastor when in actual fact a signed letter on pastor Ize-yamu letter headed paper was on its way to the governor’s office.
I am therefore stupified and flabbergasted that governor Obaseki will make mockery of the public letter by saying Osagie Ize-yamu should have written on his letterheaded paper and signed. What a cheap way for a man who is supposed to have Godly mien and be magnanimous in victory to behave. In other climes the governor will be the one to stretch the olive branch by asking all to join him in developing the state.
If I may ask the governor. Does he know the man that wrote the letter, if yes what does the letter say? If it says Congratulations on your victory and you are addressed as the governor, what else do you want? What is the big deal about signature and later headed paper. Is it a document to be presented in a law court? Mr governor, what you have gone to do at ring road Benin can be likened to mockery of the good intentions of a rigtheous man, in the person of pastor Osagie Ize-yamu. This, to say the least, is unGodly. The governor is merely playing to the gallery.
I saw the governor at the praise worship organised to mark the 50th birthday of professor, Dr, Mrs Idia Ize-yamu, pastor Osagie Ize-yamu’s wife. In company of Ex governor Peter Obi and pastor Osagie Ize-yamu himself. This is an indication that they are friends. This public mockery is not the way to go, if the friendship is to continue after politics. Benin is too small to start making enemies.
Governor Obaseki, how did you fill, when you got back to the office from ring road to find a DHL package carrying pastor Osagie Ize-yamu’s signed letter on his letterheaded paper waiting for you. You have eired.
As the elder in this matter, you need to make restitution.
Kingston Fashe writes from Lagos.