Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki has allocated the office of his Deputy, Comrade Philip Shaibu, in Government House, Benin, to serve as the secretariat for the Alaghodaro initiative. This decision contradicts Obaseki’s previous claims of renovating the one-storey building.
Alaghodaro, a Benin catchphrase symbolizing progress and moving forward, is an annual investment drive led by the Edo State Government, spearheaded by Governor Obaseki himself.
A leaked memo dated September 18, 2023, revealed that Governor Obaseki instructed the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Osarodion Ogie, to allocate the deputy governor’s office building to the trustees of Alaghodaro summit as their new secretariat. This move comes after the chairman of Alaghodaro, through its secretary, had requested a permanent secretariat building to facilitate planning and logistics for the 2023 summit scheduled for the second week of November.
According to the leaked memo, the office space closest to the summit venue, the New Festival Hall of Government House, was previously occupied by Deputy Governor Shaibu and will now be allocated to the board of trustees of the Alaghodaro summit. The summit is expected to attract potential investors from various parts of Nigeria.
As a result of this decision, Deputy Governor Shaibu has been relocated to a new office at No. 7, Dennis Osadebey Avenue, GRA, Benin, with a bold inscription that reads, “Office of the Deputy Governor, No. 7, Dennis Osadebey Avenue, GRA, Benin City.” This new location is not far from the Government House.
Additionally, it’s noteworthy that an inauguration plaque has been unveiled at the entrance of the one-storey building, indicating that it was commissioned by former Edo State Governor Adams Aliu Oshiomhole on December 16, 2014, for the Edo State Public Procurement Agency.
Deputy Governor Shaibu’s aides and civil servants attached to his office had moved out of the Government House two weeks prior, following the directive of Edo Head of Service, Anthony Okungbowa.
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Despite recent developments, it’s worth mentioning that on September 5, Deputy Governor Shaibu withdrew his anti-impeachment suit, with his eyes set on succeeding Governor Obaseki in the upcoming elections scheduled for November 12, 2024. This move adds another layer of the power tussle between Obaseki and his Deputy, Shaibu in Edo State.