Edo State Deputy Governor, Mr. Philip Shaibu, has said he is the most competent and experienced person to emerge as Governor of the State in next year’s Gubernatorial election.
Shaibu who stated this while speaking to select journalists in Abuja, also disclosed his intentions to run for governorship of Edo State under the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
While insisting that competence and experience should be the watchword in the choice of the next governor, he added that for the purpose of fairness and equity, the next governor of the state should emerge from his zone, Edo North.
“For me, competence and experience should be the watchword. Who is competent, more experienced and who will hit the ground running from day one if he becomes governor? Are we going to experiment with a new person again and the person will spend the first four years learning on the job? We need a governor that from the day he is sworn in, he will hit the ground running.
“Someone who knows that today, you cannot travel from Jattu to Benin without spending a minimum of three to four hours. We need someone whose priority would be how to collaborate with the Federal Government on this road so that one can go to Benin from Jattu within one hour, twenty minutes,” he said.
Shaibu who maintained that he was the best man for the job, said, he has been in the system and understands the challenges of Edo.
He said he understands the debt profile of Edo State and knows where to get funding to put up structures in the State.
“I am not coming to learn on the job. I am not coming to experiment. I saw when Osunbor was Governor, I saw when Oshiomhole was Governor, I worked with Obaseki as Governor. I know the mistakes of them all. I also know the things that were beneficial to Edo State that Osunbor, Oshiomhole and Obaseki did. We will amplify the good things and not repeat the mistakes. You can only do this if you are a part of the system. This is the experience I am brining on board,” he said.
On why he is seeking to become the next governor despite sentiments in favour of a candidate from Edo Central, he explained that there is no convention in Edo State on the issue of zoning, whether politically or traditionally, adding that the decision to run is a call to service of the people.
He said: “If you check the structures of those that have been governors in Edo State, there is nowhere you will see the issue of zoning. We had four Governors from Edo South, two from Edo Central and only one from Edo North. When you look at the PDP, the party has never given its Governorship ticket to any candidate from Edo North. If I get the ticket of the PDP, I will be the first candidate of the PDP from Edo North since 1999.”
He added that if he eventually becomes governor, he won’t be governor of Afenmai people only but the governor of Edo state.
He emphasized that Edo is in dire need of practical governance and cannot afford to experiment again with anyone who does not understand the political and social needs of the State.
On why he is seeking to become governor despite the many failings of the present government where is he deputy governor, Shaibu said: “I can tell you that all the sectors I have been asked to lead are handled creditably well. The Obaseki administration did very well with EdoBest and other sectors. I know the sectors that are still struggling and I know how to make them work. That is why I am saying that experience is what I am bringing on board. I understand why certain things are moving well and why others are moving slowly.”