edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, on Tuesday extended an olive branch to his former benefactor, Adams Oshiomhole, and his main opponent in last Saturday’s governorship election, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.
Obaseki asked the duo to join hands with his administration to develop the state.
The governor made the call after receiving his Certificate of Return from the Independent National Electoral Commission in Benin.
He used the occasion to also commend the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), for ensuring that Saturday’s election was free, fair and credible.
The governor said, “I thank President Muhammadu Buhari for the part he played in ensuring a free, fair and credible election. He will be remembered as the father of democracy in Nigeria. He had a choice to ensure his party was declared winner, but insisted that the right thing be done.
“I use this opportunity to reach out to our brothers on the other side of the divide as we are one family in the pursuit to provide public good for our citizens. The election shows that they trust us more now to provide leadership. It doesn’t mean the opposition parties don’t have a role to play.
“I use this opportunity to extend the hands of fellowship to my brother, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, and his other colleagues in the APC as well as other parties to join hands with us to move Edo forward.
“I call on Adams Oshiomhole that the fight is over and he should come and join in building the house which he was part of, in laying the foundation. We have no malice, but only disagree on the approach in moving Edo forward.”
The governor commended the leadership of INEC and security agencies for their neutrality and professionalism in carrying out their functions.
He also made special mention of the members and leaders of his party, the Peoples Democratic Party for their “tenacity and doggedness” in ensuring the party emerged victorious.
To the Oba of Benin, he said, “I also thank the Benin Monarch, Omo N’ Oba N’ Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Ewuare II, for his fatherly role in ensuring that the election was peaceful. I thank Edo people and clergy men for their prayers and support towards ensuring a successful election. I thank God for helping Edo State conduct an election which many predicted would be bloody and characterised by violence, but God stepped in and made it peaceful.”
The INEC National Commissioner in charge of Edo, Bayelsa and Rivers states, Mrs May Agbamuche-Mbu, who presented the Certificate of Return expressed gratitude to all stakeholders in the state for partnering INEC to deliver on its mandate.