The Oba of Benin, Omo N’ Oba N’ Edo, Uku Akpolokpolor, Oba Ewuare II, has condenmed the bloodly attack, last Saturday, July 25, by suspected party thugs at the palace gate, saying the palace remained non-partisan.
The clash was said to have occurred at the palace gate shortly after the state Governor, Godwin Obaseki, and some PDP governors who came for the formal flag-off of the governorship campaign left the palace after a courtesy visit to the monarch.
Recall that the motley crowd of youths had booed the governor and the PDP, describing them with unprintable names.
Some thugs believed to be known and associated with the State Government had reportedly returned to the scene (when the entourage had hardly gone very far off) to open fire on the youths, and reportedly injuring no fewer than ten of them.
But, in a press statement issued and signed by the Secretary of the Benin Traditional Council, Frank Irabor, the palace said it was surprised to hear later that there was an incident outside the palace directly in front of Oredo Local Government Council secretariat.
The statement reads in part: “The palace therefore wishes to reinterate and emphasize once more that the Benin Throne is not partisan and uses this medium to advise all political party members not to turn Edo state into a war zone because of governorship ambition.
“The palace also recalled the warm reception accorded the Oba by Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state and Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto state when the Oba paid a ” Thank You” visit to those states and the visit ended well.”