Dramatic scenes unfolded during a church service marking the 32nd anniversary of Edo State’s creation as security operatives prevented Edo Deputy Governor Philip Shaibu from greeting Governor Godwin Obaseki, his principal.
The incident occurred within the premises of the Government House, Ben
Amid the commemorative service, Governor Obaseki, accompanied by his wife Betsy and Charles Aniagwu, a representative of the Delta State Governor, was unexpectedly the center of attention.
Edo Deputy Governor Philip Shaibu, despite not having an official invitation to the church service, made an attempt to approach and greet his superior.
However, security personnel, identified as members of the Department of State Service (DSS), intervened and halted Shaibu’s approach within a two-meter radius of the governor.
Shaibu, undeterred, engaged in a conversation with the security operative, explaining his intentions. Governor Obaseki chose to remain uninvolved, looking away as the interaction transpired.
After the discussion, Deputy Governor Shaibu returned to his seat, allowing the service to proceed without further incident.
Reacting to the incident, Governor Obaseki’s Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Andrew Okungbowa, clarified that the governor was unaware of the security aides’ actions and had not anticipated the deputy governor’s greeting.
Okungbowa emphasized that the security personnel were executing their duty to ensure the safety of the governor during the public church event.
“The church is a public event, so the security aides had a duty to safeguard their principal,” Okungbowa stated, affirming that Governor Obaseki bore no responsibility for the occurrence and was not apprised of Deputy Governor Shaibu’s intention to greet him.
The incident spotlighted the underlying tension between Governor Obaseki and Deputy Governor Shaibu, arising from disparities in their gubernatorial aspirations.
Despite the differences, Deputy Governor Shaibu restated his unwavering loyalty to Governor Obaseki.
In a conversation with journalists at the event, he described the governor as an elder brother and pledged his continued allegiance.
“My loyalty to Edo governor remains absolute. I see that everybody is showing solidarity. I am also in solidarity with the governor,” Shaibu affirmed.
He stressed the significance of addressing any concerns he might have with the governor privately rather than in the media.
This commitment reflects his intent to maintain a respectful and well-mannered approach.
“If I have issues with him (Obaseki), it is better settled at home and not in the media. I was brought up well,” Shaibu concluded, concluding the incident with poise and decorum.