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Edo civil servants now less than 2,000 —Ize-Iyamu •PDP reduced the number in 2002 —Information Commissioner

Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) supporters, during the kick-off of the governorship election campaign, at Auchi Sports Complex, Auchi, Edo State, at the weekend.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship aspirant in Edo State, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, has accused the state governor, Adams Oshiomhole, of decimating the state civil service from 13,000 that his government inherited, to less than 2,000 as of today.

The PDP candidate, who stated this during the Edo North flag off of his campaign, held at Auchi Sports Complex, Auchi, also noted that Governor Oshiomhole did not contribute a dime to his own campaign in 2007, adding that he along with other persons including Chief Tom Ikimi fought the battle that made Oshiomhole governor.

Thousands of people thronged the venue of the flag off which had in attendance PDP leaders such as the Edo State chairman, Dan Orbih, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, Chief Tom Ikimi, Senator Yisa Braimah, Chief Mike Ogiadomhe and Alhaji Kashitu Ozeto, among others.

In his remark, Orbih, who accused Governor Oshiomhole of dividing Edo North, noted that the governor was guilty of picking out Etsako West Local Government Area for development among the six local government areas in the area, even as he added that in Etsako West council, the governor only focused on his native Iyamho Village, which he said, is just one of the 28 villages comprising the Uzaire clan.

Senator Braimah, who also spoke, said denying the PDP the usage of the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium for its campaign flag off, last week, amounted to abuse of office, affirming what Orbih said Governor Oshiomhole focused developmental projects in Iyamho, a community he said, was only one out of the eight villages that make up ward 10 in Etsako West Local Government Area.

He allayed fears and rumour doing the rounds that he would marginalise Edo North if elected governor, saying that he was in love with the area and was instrumental to the election of Oshiomhole as the first executive governor of Edo State from the area.

In his address, Ize-Iyamu said, “I challenge any Edo APC leader who can say that they influenced the governorship seat to Edo North. Certainly none of them!  I stand among the first three, who said it must be Edo North.

“Let me say that when Adams Oshiomhole came, after going to PDP, ANPP and the Labour Party, he came to us to say that we should allow him to become the first governor from the Edo North.

“After eight years, I see no functional hospital in Edo North. The only hospital does not have an x-ray machine to even diagnose the nature of an ailment. The people have no drinking water. They have no industry despite being blessed with solid minerals,” he stated.

In reaction, however, the Edo State Commissioner for Information, Prince Kassim Afegbua, said it was the PDP government that actually reduced the number of civil servants in the state in 2002.

He added that the Adams Oshiomhole administration has succeeded in getting rid of the ghost workers planted in the state civil service by the PDP and has recruited workers since 2009.