Let Us Work Together For The Good Of Our State; Support Competent, Popular Candidates For 2015-2016 Polls, EDHA Crisis Must Stop

By The Edo Unity League

The attention of board of trustees and members of Edo Unity League – a socio-intelligentsia and cultural organization has been drawn to an embroiled political scene that has enveloped the life and existing peaceful co-existence of Edo people in the last few months and the seeming nonchalance of key political leaders to wade in for the sake of peace. Consequently, we consider it a major responsibility of ours to forge a peaceful and constructive way forward as this dastardly act is capable of plunging our dear State into an avoidable political and economic imbroglio. The peaceful disposition that Edo people is renowned for cannot be compromised for any political, social or economic reason(s), we owe it a duty to conscientiously sensitize the good people of Edo State on the need to remain resolute in the pursuit for the sustainable growth and development of our communities; EUL has continuously been in the forefront of brokering peace accord within our communities.

The League is not unaware of clandestine moves by some centrifugal elements to subject the State's political and economic machineries into chaotic and ungovernable scenarios in order to continue to overheat the polity as a 'build-up' for the 2015-2016 elections as a way to impose unpopular candidates on the people of Edo State; these forces believe that with this chaotic and ungovernable situation on the ground, Edo people may be distracted from the proposed clinical analysis and appraisal of aspirants for the Edo Assembly and other elections in the State. The board and members of EUL has found it very dishonourable and an aberration the deliberate disdain and disregard for the highly revered Oba of Benin by the dramatis personae in the wake of the EDHA crisis were the Monarch advised aggrieved parties to settle the brawl amicably for the sake of peace which the Oba is known for, he who must have peace must settle tiny scuffles, yet the Oba's passionate plea fell on deaf ears.

We would have thought that at this stage in the life of our State, operatives of arms of government will consistently agree and shift grounds on measures towards the overall growth and development of Edo State irrespective of political, academic and social leanings, if the political undercurrent is not immediately nipped on the bud, we may be

heading towards a very deteriorating political era in our State, we think this is uncalled-for, especially as the 2015 elections gathers momentum. Ivbi' Edo, wa gia kuę obọ kugbe naya vbęn alaghodaro (Edo people, let us join hands for the progress of our State) we cannot sacrifice the peace accord of our State on the altar of political expediency; Edo State has grown beyond ''agbero and kill-and-divide politics,'' we want to strongly warn the financiers of this crisis to desist from further wasting tax payers money on the EDHA brawl as it is capable of provoking Edo people to take drastic measures against those involved.

Don't Impose Unpopular Candidates On Edo People!
We have received with displeasure, news of attempts by several political party leaders and so-called financiers to impose unpopular candidates on Edo people in 2015, especially for the House of Assembly elections. As a non-partisan organization, we are very concerned about the credibility of people jostling for political positions to represent the general interest of Edo people. Although we do not have written documents to this alleged barbaric attempts, yet we do not want to undermine the possibility of such unholy act, since it has been a norm in our democratic space. We strongly condemn and frontally resist this act as it is highly undemocratic, diabolic and a rape on democratic ethos, principles and practice; it is high time we began to run our democracy in line with global best practice. WE CANNOT CONTINUE TO DO THE SAME THING THE SAME WAY AND EXPECT A DIFFERENT RESULT, WE MAY NOW CHANGE THE TIDE!

Edo people will no longer condone such democratically-unrighteous tendencies, and will go all-out to support constructively-minded candidates poised with dispensing constructive and grass-rooted representation for Edo land; our collective standpoint and resolve is to ensure that only the best and people-oriented candidates emerge as flag bearers at the respective competitive levels. Every democracies must learn to survive democratic challenges without grinding government and/or people-friendly democratic structures, it makes no sense to continue to denigrate our traditional and democratic institutions for personal and sectional gains, no one individual or group can claim ownership of our common patrimony, collective yearnings and interest, we must join hands with the government of the day to ensure that only the best turns out for political representation.

As the call for youth's active participation continue to occupy political discourse within and outside the shores of our land, state actors must consider the 2015 and subsequent elections as a viable launch pad for this first-time-ever clarion call in order to forestall a possible revolutionary movement that may plunge our State and country into a state of disrepair; rather than engaging our youth body for political thuggery and agberoism, we must now like never before begin to tap into the innate positive exuberance that lies within the youth for sustainable national development. It behoves on the teeming Nigerian energetic, creative and exuberant youth to consistently call for constructive, democratic and grass-rooted representation at all levels of governance.

Edo will always occupy its pride of place in Nigeria's political odyssey due to its enormous contributions to Nigeria's overall development, and so cannot bow to any pressure or centrifugal masterplan by any individual or group of persons either at the State or central to plunge our economic, academic, cultural and political fortunes underground. We call on all organs of government in Edo State to sheath their swords, return to the negotiation table and all serving members of the State House of Assembly begin to make appropriate arrangements to tender an unreserved apology to the Oba of Benin for affront on the person and office of the Monarch if they do not want to earn the wrath of our ancestors.

2015-2016 aspirants must not see the build-up and forthcoming elections as a do-or-die-affair, rather, they must endeavor to use this exercise as a viable platform to test their popularity in areas of socio-democratic consciousness, astute leadership tenacity, articulate democratic prowess, grass-root acceptance, people-oriented policy making capability, ebullient promotion and ventilation of the values and fortunes of democratic governance, while imbibing the sportsmanship spirit of uniting with winners and see themselves as major partners in progress in the build-up to robust economic, social, academic and infrastructural development before, during and after the elections.

This is geared towards the betterment of all.