ADAMS Oshiomhole, the senator representing Edo North Senatorial District and former Governor of Edo, says the incumbent governor of the state, Mr Godwin Obaseki, remains his friend in spite of their political and party differences.
Oshiomhole spoke while giving his goodwill message at the ongoing 2023 Alaghodaro Summit in Benin.
The summit has as its theme, “The Edo Story: Creating Shared Opportunities into the Future.”
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Alaghodaro summit is held yearly by the Edo Government, in partnership with the private sector, to mark the anniversary of Obaseki in office.
The state government usually avail itself of the opportunity to showcase the progress being recorded in transforming the state into an investment haven.
Oshiomhole, who thanked Obaseki for hosting the Alaghodaro summit and inviting him, noted that the world should know that he and Obaseki were friends not enemies.
According to him, being friends doesn’t mean we can’t disagree or have different opinions; but we must treat ourselves with love and care.
“Regardless of what people say, we should not give the impression that different options translate to war.
“People don’t need the tears of leaders joining them to lament but taking bold steps to solve the problem facing the people.
“Having the privilege as a governor, I have high regard for the Office of the Governor and for the governor himself.
“To have all the civilian governors elected in the state present here today speaks volumes.
“We definitely belong to different political parties but the sum total of those parties is not equal to Edo State.
“What this means to me is that we can politic differently but never have doubt about the shared commitment to the citizens of the state that should be the greatest in Nigeria.
“The language of leaders matters to followers. What defines democracy is that of ideology, even if we share the same destination but the route to get there may differ, it should not be a matter of war.
“I thought the world should know that Godwin is my friend. It doesn’t matter; being friends does not mean we cannot debate or disagree but being friends means we treat ourselves with love and care and bring our followers together.
“I am happy that with all the challenges in Nigeria, Nigeria is greater than the challenges,” he said.
Earlier, Obaseki said his government had, in the past seven years, reengineered Edo for growth and development, and consciously laid a solid foundation for the state’s future.
The governor noted that the government focused on six thematic pillars, including institutional reforms, economic revolution, social welfare, infrastructure development, environmental sustainability and arts and culture.
Obaseki noted that the bold reforms had positively impacted the lives of millions of Edo people, placing the state on the path of sustainable and accelerated growth and development.
NAN reports that two former governors of the state, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and Chief Lucky Igbinedion, were also present at the event.
Though they spoke at different times during the programme, both former governors commended Obaseki’s lofty achievements and visionary leadership. (NAN)