The candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the September 19 Edo State gubernatorial election, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has challenged the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to clear its infamous status of a “tax collector” – a despicable description it earned from the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike.
Reacting to a challenged posed by the party for him to provide evidence of goodwill from the state’s former Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, Pastor Ize-Iyamu denounced the PDP as a “fallen party in tattered rags, authoring an allegory of tax collectors and a Zacheus who must remain short of his ‘non-negotiable second term ambition.’”
He asked the party to focus on its internal squabbles exacerbated by the divisiveness of Governor Godwin Obaseki who allegedly obtained the party’s ticket forcibly through a national imposition by induced tax collectors.
The statement signed by the Director of Communication and Media of Campaign Organization, John Mayaki, read: “The sun is dawning on a new era at the People’s Democratic Party. For a party that has almost successfully faded into quiet irrelevance, the saying that bad publicity is better than no publicity has come to define this new era.
“A fallen party, in a bid to rise again, is grabbing at anything, be it pole or straw, just to find its feet again. And then comes Obaseki, a fodder, pole, straw, and even cash cow, furnishing this fumbling party with seeds that will only counter-productively grow detrimental discordance.”
“However, in their deadened obscurity now enlivened by the hapless Obaseki, this PDP has a strong headache: Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, the APC’s Edo State gubernatorial candidate. Disturbed by the Pastor’s widespread popularity and massive acceptance among common Edo people, the PDP, running with their crippled Obaseki, is looking for just anything to lay hands on in their bid to burnish Obaseki’s waning, if not inexistent popularity.
“This is why they have, through a memo signed by the National Publicity Secretary, called on the illustrious Ize-Iyamu to avail them of instances of past goodwill by Comrade Adams Oshiomhole. However, that singular memo has achieved something sinister and unexpected.”
“Harping on the sentences made at the heat of a very charged campaign, the PDP seeks to defenestrate Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu while at the same time turning a blind eye on the well-published flowery praises heaped on the Pastor by Oshiomhole in the past. Addressing a scholarly audience, Oshiomhole had confessed his admiration and respect for his former campaign director, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.
“In this speech that can even be re-watched in videos across social media platforms, Oshiomhole was particular about not just the Pastor’s book intelligence but his smartness and ability to inspire and mobilize the people. For this reason, he, Oshiomhole, praised to high heavens, the Pastor’s unique achievement of delivering 18 out of the existing 18 local governments to the political party.”
“Even as tables turned later, making Obaseki the anointed kid, he never enjoyed such showers of praise. And it wasn’t that Oshiomhole, in his renowned eloquence, cannot or was not eager to say things of this man, but rather because Obaseki is a flat uninspiring character.
“Today, the PDP revisionists will, for deliberate amnesia, forget to mention these facts. Neither will they mention that at Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s 50th birthday, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole wrote a handwritten letter filled with unrestrained admiration and personally delivered it to Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.”
“While their house is collapsing and the roof is catching fire, PDP is adamant about scratching its neighbor’s beautiful new car. The newest development is even reflected by this troubling memo that is ordering Ize-Iyamu to provide goodwill from Oshiomhole. Emerging news has it that signed by the National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, Obaseki’s candidature is a brainchild of the party’s national superimposition.
“The Edo State chapter of the party, it appears, is not at home nor happy with Obaseki’s candidature. Although still stifled, the state chapter has grumbled that they were dribbled and their will hijacked after Obaseki paid dearly and hugely, a National cabal, for Edo PDP candidature.”
“All this corroborates two things: first, the accusation that Obaseki financed his unripe and undue candidacy with 25 billion naira; and secondly, Governor Wike’s famous branding of PDP national leaders as tax collectors. Now, Chris Nehikhare, PDP Edo State chapter publicity secretary, has expressed his dissatisfaction with Kola Ologbondiyan writing, signing, and publishing that memo that ordered Ize-Iyamu to produce any Oshiomhole goodwill of him.
“PDP has become a party in tattered rags, authoring an allegory of tax collectors and a Zacheus who must remain short of his ‘non-negotiable second term ambition.
“In all these, it should not be mistaken that Chris Nehikhare’s indignation is righteous. His anger does not come from a place of moral belligerence or hierarchical hurt, rather a simple vexation that the money Obaseki rolled out for the service of his ambition went to the party’s national organ and not the state structure.
‘’But in all these, there is hardly any cause for surprise. This is PDP, a party that squandered the collective future of a nation for unbridled 16 years; a party that has been this way since its inception; a party that would be this way forever. It is a good thing that Obaseki, a politically troubled child, has gone to them, his desperation unveiling old attitudes that never died. They should enjoy.”
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