The Comrade Governor of Edo State, Adams Oshiomhole of the All Progressives Congress (APC), is having a public meeting with karma and not enjoying the interaction at all. Karma, as the Word Web Dictionary defines it, is “the effects of a person’s actions that determine their fate in this life and the next incarnation.” As matters stand, the effects of the actions of Oshiomhole have come back to determine his fate and the ex-union leader is sweating profusely even though we’re in the middle of the cold rainy season.
Oshiomhole’s encounter with karma began rather quietly some months ago. It was triggered off when the Senator representing Edo South in the National Assembly, Edobor Ehigie Uzamere, defected from the APC back to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Uzamere had left the PDP in 2007 to join the Action Congress of Nigeria, one of the middling parties that coalesced into the APC. His return to the Edo State PDP fold was a precursor to what would prove to be an unprecedented exodus of popular politicians and their followers from the Edo APC to the PDP.
Among the former supporters who have left the Comrade Governor sweating in self-induced panic is Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, a savvy grassroots politician and former Secretary to the State Government under the administration of Governor Lucky Igbinedion. Other defectors include Chief Tony Omoaghe, one-time Edo State PDP Chairman; Chief Amos Osunbor, former Senatorial leader in Edo South, and Alhaji Usman Shagadi who served as Edo State APC Deputy Chairman and leader of the party in Oshiomhole’s own Senatorial District. Additionally, Rt. Hon. Bright Omokhodion, a former Speaker of the Edo State House of Assembly, Hon. West Idahosa, a three-time member of the House of Representatives and, at the last count, four serving members of the Edo State House of Assembly, have also left the fold of the Comrade Governor’s APC.
It is also said that the Chairman of Ocean Marine Tankers Limited, Capt. Hosa Okunbo, who is widely known to have bankrolled Oshiomhole’s campaign to become governor, has since been reportedly “stabbed in the back” by the Comrade Governor and as such is no longer a political acolyte of the governor.
Indeed, it is this tendency to turn against his benefactors and “stab them in the back” as it were that is at the heart of the crisis presently confronting Oshiomhole. Defector after defector has revealed how Oshiomhole’s brand of politics is full of shams, outright dishonesty, egotistical tendencies, unwillingness to listen to anybody’s advice, and an unstatesmanlike habit to utter unwarranted and unnecessary words to those around him.
It would have been easy to dismiss all these accusations as the sour grapes of political acolytes who have fallen out of favour, but Oshiomhole famously and very publicly told a helpless widow in the street to “go and die.” Even though his image-makers quickly acted out a crisis-management script that saw the widow being invited to tea with the governor and being offered employment afterwards, the true nature of the Comrade Governor had already been revealed for all to see.
Moreover, historical events during Oshiomhole’s era as a labour leader speak to the fact that the Comrade Governor has quite a track record of “managing” his true nature from being revealed to his supporters. It is said that he is a master of concealing his insincerity by pretending to have principles that he does not really have. Therefore, the Oshiomhole, who in his true element told the widow to “go and die,” is the real man, while the Oshiomhole who turned around to offer the widow tea and a job is the “managed” image of the man
It is true that the Comrade Governor apologised to the widow and made amends, but the point here is that what came after the original deed were mere afterthoughts dreamed up by image-makers. The Bible, the most authoritative book to all Christians, including Oshiomhole, warns us in Mathew 12:34 that “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” To further reinforce the point, Luke 6:45 states: “The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” (English Standard Version)
The aim here is not to demonise the Comrade Governor but to demonstrate that the defections in Edo State is simply a case of the effects of a person’s actions coming back to determine their fate in life. In essence, while Oshiomhole is at liberty to cry wolf as much as he likes, the truth of his self-inflicted dilemma is that he is just having a public meeting with karma as the seeds of deceit that he sowed have borne fruit, the taste of which he obviously doesn’t like.
Francis Ehigiator contributed this piece from Benin City, Edo State.