It’s not click-bait… It’s Edo State politics.
What i’m starting to notice about news reporting in Edo State (and Nigeria generally) is that the press pick up on individual stories but very rarely seem to link them into what are clearly ‘mega-stories’ of significant public interest.
Another all out war in Edo State looms as the next governorship election draws closer and the first shots have been fired (very literally).
Usually it’s one political group against another (say APC v PDP). However this year the APC currently have full control of Edo State and the power struggle is an internal one. It’s already turning very nasty.
Two sides have formed. One group supporting the current governor: Godwin Obaseki
The other group supporting a breakaway faction hoping for the instillation of: Osagie Ize-Iyamu
The breakaway faction (supporting Ize-Iyamu) have formed an internal “pressure group” called The Edo Peoples Movement (EPM). Whilst their counterparts supporting Obaseki have formed The Obaseki/Shaibu Movement (OSM).
The pressure group EPM consist of a nefarious bunch. A mix of cultists, cultist utilizers and terrorists. Their idea of “pressure” is the use of violence, bombs, gunmen, false flag terrorism and the NBM.
A good article here documents how the two sides are comprised.
Many of the same names just happen to appear in this blog post from 2016 (which also details EPM’s Adams Oshiomhole’s historic relationship with the NBM and cultists generally)
Other notable figures in the EPM aside from Adams Oshiomhole are: Osaro Obazee (NBM), Tony “Kabaka” Adun (NBM) and Hon Henry Idahagbon (NBM). Just to name a small few. Most of the EPM in fact seem to be of notably bad character.
Tony “Kabaka” Adun is the hired thug you hire to hire hired thugs. He was weaponized by Adams Oshiomhole during his governorship election and rewarded with a government role which saw him extorting (through brutality and murder) the population of Edo. He’s now a billionaire. Quite an oddball one.
Hon Henry Idahagbon is the former Edo State Attorney General responsible for the release of hundreds of cultists arrested for murder some years ago.
And last but not least is the EPM’s governorship hopeful himself Osagie Ize-Iyamu. Ize-Iyamu is the character mentioned here in this post referred to as “Kpelebe” and is notably at the time of writing awaiting a court trial for corruption.
The unhappy NBM member stating “The politicians wants to control NBM for the thugs Mayor have been supplying and using to collect vast amounts of money from the government (through) kpelebe”
It’s fair to say the EPM have a very strong affiliation with the Neo Black Movement. Both historically and currently today.
So where is the violence, bombs, gunmen and false flag terrorism?
This is where it gets interesting….
On one hand Governor Godwin Obaseki seems to be playing by the book. He recently ordered the arrest of Adams Oshiomhole accusing “Adams Oshiomhole and his co-dissidents in the proscribed Edo Peoples Movement (EPM) were causing violence and crises in the state”
“Oshiomhole’s unholy romance with the EPM has continually threatened the peace in the state, causing bodily harm to Edo people and destruction of property worth millions of naira.”
“Oshiomhole along with his lieutenants in the proscribed Edo Peoples Movement (EPM) resorted to the use of explosives and other dangerous weapons in some parts of the state, thereby endangering the lives of law-abiding citizens.””
Governor Godwin Obaseki also ordered and carried out the demolition of Tony Kabaka’s multi-million dollar luxury hotel that was built of the grounds of a primary school. Even despite Kabaka employing two lions as security guards.
However the EPM are claiming otherwise and are claiming Governor Godwin Obaseki is out to kill them. Their claims are somewhat non credible.
In October 2019 Adams Oshiomhole claims he is set upon by a horde of thugs sent by Governor Obaseki. He claims his own army of “APC Youth” countered the attack and nobody was hurt. The police responded by saying no such incident had occurred and the story was fabricated.
Next it was the NBM and EPM’s Henry Idahagbon who was subject to a high profile alleged assassination. He claims that assailants arrived in three cars to his Benin City office and fired from the road into the third floor of his building. Somewhat baffling to me that hired killers would expect to hit anything located in a third floor office from the ground.
Edo State police said they were unaware of any incident having taken place but Henry Idahagbon’s aide claimed “If I take you upstairs now, you will see things for yourselves and you will see the bullet holes on the wall”
EPM’s Lawrence Okah was next to be claiming to be subject to an equally hapless series of attacks. First he claims that gunmen arrived one night and “I heard gunshots. They shot at my bedroom. The police came and picked 52 bullets from my house”.
The following week he claims to be the victim of an attempted bomb plot to kill him. Again not a single person is even scratched by the incident. A bomb goes off at his gate and an un-exploded device is found close to his bedroom window.
During this incident it just so happens Osagie Ize-Iyamu is present at the property. Very curiously he offers an explanation of what didn’t happen: “Who will go and throw a bomb in his own house because he wants to do mischief?”
Osagie Ize-Iyamu been in the orbit of similar mischief back in 2014 when he claimed (his new best friend) Adams Oshiomhole had ordered the bombing of Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s wife’s dental office. Adams Oshiomhole claiming Ize-Iyamu and his cohorts were “stage-managing assaults on its agents to be used as pretext by its thugs to attack officials of Edo State Government”
Which is exactly what Governor Obaseki and the Edo State Government is asserting is happening with these recent incidents. They claim the EPM are staging attacks against themselves to blame the government.
The state government described Ize-Iyamu, Oshiomhole and their alleged cohorts as the common denominators of political violence in Edo State.
“On the 19th of October, 2014, this same Ize-Iyamu announced that his house along Dennis Osadebey Way, GRA, Benin City, where his wife carries out her dental practice was bombed and at that time, he pointedly stated that Oshiomhole, who was then governor of the state, was responsible for the attack. From that time till now, there has been a cessation of the use of explosives and other dangerous weapons in causing mayhem and heating up the political space in the state.
“It is, therefore, rather curious that with the same Ize-Iyamu coming back into the political space in the last three months, extreme political violence has resurfaced with bombs going off in parts of the state and gunmen attacking politically exposed persons.”
The Edo State government recently released a press release on the whole debacle detailing their theory of the EPM’s motive for carrying out the attacks.
The Edo State Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Hon. Paul Ohonbamu, has said the former governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Osagie Ize-Iyamu and members of the proscribed Edo Peoples Movement (EPM) are working towards forcing the Federal Government to declare a State of Emergency in the state.
This followed the use of explosives and other dangerous weapons by persons linked to the group in causing mayhem and heating up the political space in Edo State.
Ohonbamu, who spoke with journalists in Benin City, reiterated that the state governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki is not prone to violence and has nothing to gain in threatening the lives of opposition members.
He said it was laughable that the bombings have continued to follow the same pattern, noting, “In the past two weeks, we have had incidents of bombings in the state allegedly orchestrated by the members of the Edo People Movement (EPM) who went ahead to point accusing fingers to the Obaseki-led administration.
“The genesis of the whole problem started with the inauguration of the Edo State House of Assembly (EDHA) as the group, EPM, accused the governor forgetting that he doesn’t inaugurate the House but rather issues proclamation. They tried to use the National Assembly, the Senate and Federal House of Representatives against the governor but failed. Now their option is to resort to bombings to create the impression that the state is not safe so that the President will declare a state of emergency in Edo State,” he added.
He noted, “The recent moves in deploying bombings have merely portrayed their weakness and fear of electoral defeat. The defeat is sure and it is in fixed deposit. Osagie Ize-Iyamu was defeated before and will be defeated again any time any day. What is happening now is not a surprise as the intention of the EPM is to embarrass the Edo State Government by creating the impression that the state is not safe and the government is not doing well in terms of security but their plans have failed.
“Violence is a vice, which Ize-Iyamu imbibed right from childhood as Oshiomhole told us how Ize-Iyamu bathed people with acid while the pastor was schooling in the University of Benin (UNIBEN).”
The commissioner urged the people of Edo State to remain calm as the state remains peaceful, adding, “There is no cause for alarm as the security architecture is effectively keeping the state safe for all who reside in the state. The EPM wants to create the impression that the state is not safe, so that President Muhammadu Buhari will declare a state of emergency in Edo State. They should wait till the party primary and show how strategic they are by winning.”
It would seem to be a fair assessment of the situation.
I’d go on to conclude that whereas the Italian security services have recently stated it’s a concern that the NBM could be become responsible for extremist activities then they are probably unaware of the NBM’s activities in Edo State.
Activities that are pulled right out from Adolf Hitler’s book of tactics and that of far right elements in the orbit of Operation Gladio and other such other things.
Interesting weeks and months ahead in Edo State.