Oshiomhole: Proprietor, Enabler of Land Grabbers – Aziegbemi

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By Correspondent 

The former governor of Edo State and the sacked National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mr. Adams Oshiomhole, has been described as the proprietor and enabler of land grabbing in Edo State by Dr. Tony Aziegbemi, the chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in Edo State.

In a signed statement titled: “Oshiomhole, the proprietor, enabler of land-grabbers in Edo must be stopped at the polls”, the chairman assured that Edo people will reject all attempts and crooked means being orchestrated by Oshiomhole and his lackeys to dupe them into voting for his hand-picked APC candidates as a means to reenter government through the back door.

The statement added that Oshiomhole’s desire for mischief and promotion of violence became the order of the day during his administration, so much so that his agents became extremely militant against all social strata inside the state in his quest to impose a reign of terror.

“Edo State was a mafia state, controlled by criminal groups before Governor Godwin Obaseki took office in 2016.

“These gangs exercised the utmost amount of power and made money by making the populace suffer.

“With the support of the state machinery, they went around and evicted individuals from their landed property.”

Aziegbemi added that, “…when Comrade Adams Oshiomhole was governor of Edo State, he oversaw the implementation of this system.

“Oshiomhole kept and enabled these criminals because they served his interest.

“During the period from 2008 to 2016, which can be described as the dark ages in Edo’s modern history, landowners could not sleep with both eyes closed because they were at the mercy of Community Development Association (CDA) overlords, who maimed, killed and dispossessed innocent Edo citizens of their landed property with the backing of the state apparatus.

“Oshiomhole is best described as the proprietor and enabler of land-grabbing in Edo State.

He insisted that Oshiomhole did not only enable the trend, he used it as a means to service his infantry brigade,’ a collection of retrograde band of anarchists who, popularly known today as Lions and Tigers, acted as enforcers and executioners for the former governor.

“The appetite for violence and coveting other peoples’ money grew so much that they went very militant against all classes of persons in state to enforce their reign of terror. Everyone lived in danger.” The PDP chairman stated.

It will be recalled that Oshiomhole’s tenure as governor witnessed several protest by the Benin Royal Family and the University of Benin community over the forceful take over of their property around Benin City.

It’s on record that Oshiomhole in one day, demolished 22 houses that were donated to the University of Benin by late Dr. S.O Ogbemudia.

The official residence of late Prof Osayuki Oshodin wasn’t spared. The former Vice Chancellor’s wife was preparing dinner for the late Benin icon when Oshiomhole’s bulldozer removed the roof of his residence.

It’s also on record that Oshiomhole went ahead to allocate the buildings to his friends and kinsmen.

Another terrible case is the grabbing of Prince Ekpen Erediauwa’s land located on Okoro Otun in the Government Reservation Area.

Despite the protest by the Benin Royal family, Oshiomhole went ahead to build a palatial home on the land, where he presently stays.

The protest against Oshiomhole over the forceful acquisition of Prince Erediauwa’s land, had women, numbering over 100.

The Edo women under the aegis of “Concerned Edo Women,” brandished various placard with inscriptions such as: ‘Oba is permanent’, ‘governor is temporary’, ‘tradition must be respected,’ amongst others.

The women cried that it was a taboo and sacrilege in the history of Benin kingdom for a subject to forcefully take over the property of a prince.

The leader of the protesting women, Evelyn Okeaya-Inneh explained that the women in the state were worried by the action of Oshiomhole and his penchant to forcefully convert private landed property to his own.

She added that “…all lands, in Benin history, belongs to the Oba of Benin.

“We are unaware of anywhere a governor will struggle a land with a royal prince of Benin kingdom. We the concerned Edo Women in Benin kingdom from across the 18 local councils in the state condemn the action.

“We are against it as mothers, wives and sisters to the Benin palace,” she told reporters as she wept with other women.

The women who were dressed on red, noted the significance their red clothes which they claimed was a sign of danger. ‘Aiguobasivben’ – it is forbidden to fight over land with the Oba of Benin and his entire household.” Okeaya Inneh insisted.

“This is ‘Ododo’ and in Bini custom, it is not good for anybody to wear this in protest.

“We believe that if we wear this robe, there is danger ahead and as such, we give Oshiomhole one week to have a re-think and immediately give the land back to our Prince Ekpen Erediauwa.”

The women added that, Oshiomhole, “a non-Bini, could not struggle a land belonging to a Bini prince in Benin City as it was forbidden and amounted to the highest abomination ever to be heard of in the Benin royal family.”

Prince Ekpen Erediauwa was an Executive Director in Oshiomhole’s administration.

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