By Simeon OSAJIE
His Royal Majesty, Omo N’Oba N’Edo, Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Ewuare II, the Oba of Benin Kingdom has said that he will consult with relevant stakeholders across Edo State on the 2024 governor of the state.
Oba Ewuare II made the assertion while receiving a high powered delegation of Enijies of Esanland in conjunction with Esan Okpa Initiative (EOI) and Esan Liberation Movement (ELM) who paid courtesy visit to the revered king to solicit his support for Edo Central Senatorial District of the state to produce the next governor.
Speaking on behalf of the delegation led by His Royal Highness, Anselm Aidenojie II, the President, EOI, Barr. Matthew Egbadon, thanked the Omo N’Oba for the warm reception accorded the delegation.
“We are so glad Your Majesty for the warm reception to the sacred seat of our common origin. All of us of the Edo Nation holds this Palace in the highest esteem, and yearn to be here anytime, of course, at your Majesty’s pleasure and convenience.
“History teaches us that Your Majesty is not just a symbol of the historical unity of the Edo people, but also, significant traditionally, and serves as the pivot for the accomplishment of the vision of a greater and inclusive Edo Nation.
“Your Royal Majesty, please, indulge us to take factual notice of, and thank you, for the remarkable strides you have made since ascending the throne of your forebears. Indeed, Your Majesty has been a source of inspiration to Edo people for the peace and prosperity that have reigned in your kingdom and by extension Edo State in general, since your enthronement as the Oba of Benin kingdom”.
Going further, Barr. Egbadon eulogize the sterling achievements of the Benin monarch and also used the occasion to brief His Royal Majesty, Oba Ewuare II of the main reason of the august visit.
“We would like to seize this opportunity to formally apprise Your Majesty of the yearning and desire of Esan people to produce the next Governor of Edo State at the end of the tenure of the present administration in 2024. We know that this is a matter primarily within the remit of politicians and political parties to decide on.
“We have started engaging the various political leaders across the political divide in the state on the need to have a Governor of Esan extraction at Osadebey Avenue come 2024. This will be in the interest of equity, fairness and justice which Edo people are known for.
“To dispel the deliberate misinformation being bandied by some mischievous people, we need to state clearly and unequivocally that there is no ethnic insularity to this yearning. Edo people are one, ‘Edo Okpa Makhin’. We believe that all parts of Edo State have bountiful talents and sound minds that can work in unison for the greater good and development of Edo State for the benefit of all.
“Esan people have never nursed any divisive, narrow minded or supremacist agenda, and shall eternally remain in friendship and brotherhood love with all other Edo people across the State.
Continued: “Since the creation of Edo State in 1991, the statistics shows that we have only had an Edo Governor of Esan extraction for a period of about 18 months in the person of Prof. Oserheimen Osunbor. Cumulatively, our kith and kin in Edo South would have occupied the office for about 17 years by the end of the tenure of the present administration in 2024. While our kith and kin in Edo North have effectively occupied the seat for 8 years already.
“We are happy to report to Your Royal Majesty, that a considerable number of the political leaders and influentials we have consulted in the State, have supported our yearning and desire for an Edo Governor of Esan extraction come 2024.
“We will continue to engage a wide variety of political and other opinion moulders in our State to buy into and support this yearning in the interest of the unity of the Edo people.
“Though you are not a politician, we solicit Your Royal Majesty’s support and blessing for this yearning and desire of Esan people. We give full assurance that we shall encourage and support our best Esan sons and daughters to contest the elections for the office of the Governor on the platforms of the various major
political parties come 2024.”
Responding, His Royal Majesty, Omo N’Oba N’Edo, Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Ewuare II, the Oba of Benin Kingdom thank the traditional rulers and the groups for their visit and promised to look into the issue raised. He promised to consult with relevant stakeholders but said that the matter brought before him is like security matter which are not discussed in public but stress that he would consult widely with relevant stakeholders to ensure fairness and equity.
Speaking with newsmen after the meeting, leader of the delegation and Onojie of Uromi, Zaiki Anselm Aidenojie II said he’s satisfied with the outcome of the meeting.
“Am satisfied with the outcome of the meeting, he gave us very good answer, he said he wants to make consultations, which is okay. We believe in fairness; we believe in equity and we believe in justice. So what we have asked for is not too much, it’s something that can be achieved and by the grace of God and our ancestors we will achieve it”.
Also speaking, a member of the delegation and Ojomo of Ekpoma, Chief Ezekiel Ainabe said the response of Oba Ewuare II is encouraging. “It’s very encouraging, he is our father; he is aware of all that we said. Edo North have had their turn, Edo South have had their turn, Edo Central has been there for just 18 months, he promised to consult with his people and get back to us.
“The visit of Esan traditional rulers to the Oba of Benin is a significant milestone in the quest of Edo Central to produce the next Governor of Edo State in 2024,” he said.