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I will transform Edo with a 5-point agenda –Shaibu

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Against all odds, Edo State Deputy Governor, Comrade Philip Shaibu on Monday declared that his decision to seek the nomination of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to contest the 2024 governorship election in the state was driven by a passion to make the state a better place for all residents and would be anchored on five pillars if elected.

They are: “Infrastructural development and economic diversification;  education, sports, skills development; health care and social welfare systems; agriculture, rural development and poverty alleviation as well as security, environmental sustainability, and transparent governance.

Addressing his supporters at the Bishop Kelly Pastoral Centre Benin City, Shaibu stressed that “these five pillars of our agenda, among others, represent the values and priorities that we hold dear as Edolites. They represent our commitment to building a prosperous, inclusive, and viable future for all.

“To our traditional rulers and religious leaders, we acknowledge your place in the development of our state and we would ensure that under our watch, our ancestral heritage is promoted and preserved. Therefore, it is time for us to rise above partisanship, sentiments and unite under the banner of progress and development.

“Let us all come together to build a brighter future for ourselves and for generations to come. My dear people of Edo State, this declaration is not just a political affair. It’s a call to destiny; a call to become the heartbeat of this nation, not just in words but indeed.

“Therefore, I humbly seek your support, your trust, and your nomination in this upcoming election, as we embark on this journey together; united in our determination to make Edo State a better place for ourselves and generations to come”.

Justifying his ambition to succeed Governor Godwin Obaseki, who will bow out on November 12 next year, Shaibu said as Deputy Governor in the last seven years, “I have had the privilege of working closely with our amiable Governor to lay a solid foundation for progress in Edo State”, adding that under “our administration, we have seen remarkable achievements and milestones, but there is still much work to be done.

“I am aware of the need by the greater Edo people for a more inclusive government, a government of the Edo people, by the Edo people, and for the Edo people. A government of individuals who have been there and know the pains and wishes of an average Edolite.

“A government, together, with the greater Edo people will reignite the Edo Spirit and transform our tomorrow! Since my foray into politics three decades ago, I have lived among you and you have loved me as your very own son.

“I have felt your pains at close quarters, sat with the elders to benefit from their words of wisdom, led the youth in many struggles for their rights, visibility and freedom, learned the intricacies of modern governance and built adequate service capacity.

“You all are witnesses to my antecedents in government. When the waters of the Lagdo dam (in Cameroon) flooded our lands and threatened our means of livelihood, I led the emergency response team that managed the impact and kept it in check and continued to be involved in most humanitarian issues within the state.

“When COVID-19 came to threaten our very existence, I put my life on the line in its very early days when protection was not available and worked to restore calm and order at the isolation centres.

“Our Sporting treasure, Bendel Insurance, became my responsibility at some point within this administration. Through strategic management and relentless commitment, we have returned Bendel Insurance to the height of glory it belongs.

“When kidnappers took some of our citizens from Ubiaja and Igueben Train station, I worked with the rescue team, led the rescue mission from the front and brought back the kidnapped citizens safe and sound.

 

Under my supervision as the Deputy Governor, our Internally generated revenue has grown impressively; thanks to the introduction of digital and cutting-edge ideas.

“Back in the day, you didn’t just call me “Mr Constituency Project” for nothing. In my time as a legislator, I delivered 49 constituency projects at the state level and 13 solid constituency projects within my short stint at the federal level. I have fought the good fight for you my people, along the way, suffered humiliations and enjoyed many moments of victory but I am thankful in all things.

“I have been pressed but not crushed, persecuted but not abandoned, badly hurt but not destroyed. I resonate with the tireless and irrepressible Spirit of the Edo people. By the grace of God, nothing and no one can stop us. After all, I be original Edo son…100% home boy.

“This is why today, I stand before you with great conviction and resolve, as I declare my intention to run for the office of the Governor of Edo State under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the upcoming 2024 election and I am confident that with your support, we can take Edo State to even greater heights”.

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