What is the Igbinedion family fighting the comrade governor self?”
“I think we should blame the comrade governor.”
“How can you say that? The comrade governor is not a frivolous person. The people come first in anything he does. Tell the Esama to pay up his debts to the state.”
“Well, you can believe what you like. But my own problem is that why is this coming out now?”
“But the comrade governor has explained the reason behind his crusade against the Igbinedion family. But let us even put that aside; it is not in dispute that Lucky was found guilty by a competent court for corruptly enriching himself. So, what are we talking about?
“Well, if you know him, go and warn him. No one fights the Esama and gets away with it o. I am telling you a fact. And the war has started already.”
“What do you mean by that?”
“Were you not around on Tuesday? Didnt you see those women in red who protested against the governor. The red they wore means war. It means trouble for the governor. He is in big shit. “For you to know the import of the protest, let me quote the women for you: ‘We are women and as mothers, sisters and aunts to Chief Gabriel Igbinedion, we say no to any form of disrespectful behavior for the person of Chief Igbinedion. We as mothers cannot see evil in the land and support it. We are against the action of the governor particularly on Chief Igbinedion and his household. We are here because of the hardship we are going through in Benin City. We cannot pay the Land Use Charge. We pay for water; we pay our children’s school fees? The cost of transportation to New Benin is a problem for us. We voted for him to repair Edo State for us, not only in Iyamho, his village. Let him fix things in Edo State. The House of Assembly kept quiet because they are under him. Now women have come out to tell them that we are not happy. We are dressed in red to say that there is danger in Edo State because the governor is not doing well.’ Can you understand it now? The red attire is known as ‘Ododo’ in Benin Kingdom to signify danger and war.”
“Forget it. I don’t believe in all those traditional nonsense. The women were simply working for the N200 they received. There is no significance in what they did. If I were the comrade governor, I will open up on these guys. Even the Esama was once quoted as saying his son would go to jail after seeing what he stole. ”
“What are you saying and who are you calling guys?”
“They are guys. You are free to call them whatever you like but when people have sunk that low, they have lost all the respect they ordinarilly should have and for me, they deserve to rot in jail.”
“I think you are being unfair to these gentlemen. The Esama, for instance, has contributed a lot to this country’s development. The history of the education sector cannot be written without him occupying a pride of place. The aviation sector’s history cannot be written without him taking a major chapter. The history of the television industry, especially the private broadcasting arm, cannot be written without the Esama being well-regarded. So, stop deriding him.”
“My friend, stop deluding yourself. I am not impressed by all you have just reeled out. The man simply set up businesses to make money and when the money was not enough, his son helped him grab more from the commonwealth. He did not do Nigeria or Edo any good by setting up those businesses. So, look for something else to say.”
“All I will tell you is that you should go and advise your governor to retrace his step. Women will soon go naked on the street of Benin if he continues this way and you know what that means.”
“What does that mean?”
“It means his end has finally come.”
“My friend, stop deceiving yourself. If I were the comrade governor, I will simply adopt the Obasanjo strategy if the women decide to go nude on the streets of Benin.”
“What do you mean by the Obasanjo strategy?”
“When Obasanjo was president and some women protested naked against him, he was angry that only old women with already expired boobs protested. The fresh women only led them. He advised the fresh women to dare protest naked and he would unleash the male inmates from the prisons who had not had sex in a long while on them.”
“ That is barbaric!”
“So, what the Esama and his son have done is not barbaric?”
“They are innocent until proven guilty.”
“The son has been proven guilty and the father will have his day in court too.”
“I really don’t know what you are talking about.”
“You will soon understand when you will be visiting them at the prison. You should advise them to invest in renovating the prisons in the country. Since we are not sure of where they may end, let them just improve the condition of all the prisons so that anyone they find themselves will be good enough for them.”
“You are simply talking rubbish. Oshiomhole is just too controversial for my liking. To him, everybody is a thief, except himself. He is just full of himself. I remember when he was NLC president and he had issue with Heinkein Lokpobiri, who was then a senator, he kept saying: ‘We will drink this Heinkein’ as if the senator is a beer. Now, he and the same Lokpobiri, who is now a minister, are now in the same political party.
“The files of Lucky’s tenure are there for everybody who cares to check. Oshiomhole should explain to the people of Edo State how he spent the federal allocations and internally generated revenues running into trillions of naira in seven years. He should tell the people of Edo how much he is paying as land tax for his house in Iyamho worth over N10 billion and other properties he has acquired in the last seven years in Dubai, Cape Town in South Africa, in San Francisco, United States of America, a high rise apartment in Atlanta also in America and in London. He is calling everybody a thief but Oshiomhole is the biggest thief in Benin City today. Like Lucky said, I believe Oshiomhole has failed; the people of Edo State now know him better. Oshiomhole is the least qualified person to talk about corruption in the country today because his actions and programmes in the last seven years in Edo State epitomise corruption.
“He has called everybody in Nigeria a thief; called former President Olusegun Obasanjo a thief; called former President Goodluck Jonathan a thief, he called (ex-Minister of Finance, Ngozi) Okojo-Iweala a thief, and others. Yet, he cannot prove his cases. I don’t think he knows the meaning of a thief.
“He lives in the glass house and throwing stones. President Muhammadu Buhari will soon find out the real Oshiomhole by the time we provide documents against him.”
“Are you through or you still have more to say?”
“I am through.”
“Okay, let me give you my final take: Tell Lucky to produce the evidence that the comrade governor has houses in Dubai, Cape Town, San Francisco, Atlanta and London. If he cannot produce the evidence, he should just shut up forever. As for the women, they should not be deceived. Many of them don’t know why they were in the street. Why is that whenever there is a problem, politicians will buy head tie for women and give them N200 to protest? You want the government to improve your lives but you don’t want to pay taxes. All over the world people pay taxes and not protest against it. The Igbinedion family should just pay the government what is due it in terms of taxes and stop instigating the people. Nemesis will soon catch up with them.”