Aliko Dangote: I did not endorse Obaseki
Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote has denied endorsing governor of Edo state, Godwin Obaseki, for a second term in office.
Dangote in a statement issued through his spokesman, Anthony Chiejina described the reports that he endorsed the governor as an attempt to tarnish his image.
He said as a business leader, his focus is on development, job creation and philanthropy, not politics.
He said,“This is the first time that I have seen people publicly campaign for electoral office using the name of my Boss and I have to stop it immediately so that others will not try it in future.
“The said interview allegedly granted by Aliko Dangote in Abuja is an outright falsehood, a malicious, irresponsible and mischievous act aimed at tarnishing my boss’s reputation. Aliko Dangote has not travelled out of Lagos since March 19, 2020.
“In fact, he said he has not crossed the Lagos Third Mainland Bridge since that date. His name and personality should not be drawn into any political campaign.
“Aliko Dangote is an entrepreneur and business leader whose focus is on development, job creation and philanthropy. He has not endorsed anyone for electoral positions in Edo or any other state of Nigeria.”
Obaseki, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, will face Osagie Ize-Iyamu, All Progressives Congress (APC) flagbearer at the governorship election scheduled for September 19.
Dangote, had reportedly intervened in the crisis between the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, Governor, Obaseki.
However, his efforts to reconcile the two politicians failed, according to a former Edo State Governor, Prof. Oserheimen Osunbor.
Osunbor, in a statement, also said efforts to broker peace between the warring APC chieftains by the Oba of Benin, Ewuare II, were not successful.
Part of the statement read, “Given my position in the party, I have made efforts outside of public glare towards bringing about reconciliation by speaking to the two leading protagonists, the National Chairman Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and His Excellency the Governor of Edo State Godwin Obaseki as well as some of their supporters.
“I also tried to rally some elders of the party from the State to broker peace. It is common knowledge that our revered royal father, His Royal Majesty the Oba of Benin, Oba Ewuare II made his own efforts including appealing to our President Mohammadu Buhari to help broker peace among these two illustrious sons of Edo State.
“It is also believed that their mutual friend Dr. Aliko Dangote made repeated efforts at reconciliation to no avail. So did a number of others that I know.”