Obaseki said Wike can’t threaten or cajole PDP in Edo State into supporting his presidential ambition.
Obaseki was reacting to Wike’s scathing attack on his Deputy Governor, Philip Shuaibu.
The Edo State governor said his deputy did not threaten PDP, but that it is Wike, who rather, threatens the party, frequently.
“It clearly amounts to a delusion of grandeur, for any one man to nurse the idea that he owns or has more stake in the PDP and everyone should pander to him.
“We are all equal stakeholders in the party and an aggregate of the ideas, opinions and contributions of all leaders and members should form the position of the party and not the view of one individual or a select few,” Obaseki said of the Rivers governor.
He accused Wike and the PDP National Vice Chairman, South-south, Dan Orbih, of trying to destabilise the party in Edo.
“Governor Wike and his collaborators, headed by Chief Dan Orbih, in Edo State, will not succeed in destabilising the PDP in Edo State as they did other states like Cross River just to secure delegates to actualize his alleged personal ambition to run for the presidency in 2023.
“In Edo, we don’t accept political bullies and overlords and historically, we have demonstrated our capacity to unshackle ourselves and dethrone bullies and highhanded leaders,” he said.
On Shaibu’s threat to leave PDP
“My deputy governor was a former National President of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) and his comment is representative of the essence of the nation’s youth population, who are inclined to openly speak up and question the status quo,” Governor Obaseki said.
“If Governor Wike cannot understand and adequately respond to the style and character of the Nigerian youth, how can he aspire to lead them?” he added.
Obaseki said Shaibu’s comment about the lack of integration of new members in the Edo PDP is a genuine concern that should be addressed by the party.
He specifically said that the PDP in Edo has registered over 500,000 new members since the September 2020 governorship election but that “these new members have not been properly integrated into our party after two years”.
“Also, the leaders, executives and members who came with me into the party have still not been accepted, integrated or harmonised into the party.
“More worrisome is the fact that old members of Edo PDP, who are open to inclusion and supportive of building a large party are being vilified and ostracised by a cabal purportedly led by Chief Dan Orbih, who is your perpetual guest in Port Harcourt and is remotely used to orchestrate the destabilisation of the party in Edo State,” Obaseki told Governor Wike.
He said Wike should have taken a cue from the National Chairman of PDP, Iyorchia Ayu, who “responded to my deputy’s remarks, as a conscientious leader who is able to show empathy and consideration”.
He also said, “If Governor Wike was one who is wont to show respect and courtesy to his colleague-governors, he would have ordinarily reached out to me to express his concerns about the views made by my deputy governor, rather than embarking on this unwarranted public onslaught.”
Because of Shaibu’s threat to leave PDP, Governor Wike had called on the party leadership to sanction the Edo deputy governor whom he painted as being ungrateful to the PDP which provided him and Governor Obaseki to contest for their second term in office after the All Progressives Congress barred them from their governorship primaries.
“This is the same deputy governor that was kneeling down to beg for us to give them umbrella, today you have the effrontery to threaten PDP. Such a shame,” Wike said.
“I have written to the national chairman of the party that if they don’t constitute a disciplinary committee against the deputy governor, I will invoke the sanctions of the party and will make sure they must discipline that deputy governor,” Wike added.