As the political clouds gather storm by the day in Edo State, various interests and leanings are beginning to take clearer forms.www.themidwestjournal’s Ima’ Ero recently engaged Prince Curtis Eghosa Ugbo, The Senior Special Assistant on Media and Public Affairs to the Governor ,Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, in a chat that sought to unravel aspects of his political ideology and general thoughts on the state of affairs in the state and Nigeria at large.
Please tell us a bit about your background:
As you already know, my name is Curtis Eghosa Ugbo and I am from Oredo LGA of Edo
State. I obtained my primary and secondary education here in (Baptist High School)
Benin City and my university education (Biochemistry/Clinical Pharmacology) in
Port-harcourt (Uniport) and I am the Mock Speaker of Edo Peoples House of Assembly
who took over affairs from the rubber stamped legislators in the last Assembly when
they started behaving dishonorably in public. I am currently the Senior Special
Assistant on Media and Public Affairs to the Comrade Governor of Edo State.
What is the significance of your catapult?
The catapult you see me wear on most occasions is highly spiritual and it is a
spiritual tool to fight against oppression of the masses of the people by the high
Political, economic class and also to catapult the corrupt/bad political leaders out
of the system of governance in Nigeria generally and Edo State in particular.
Between activism and politics which would best describe you?
I can say I am a political activist who fights for the interest of the people; to me
activism goes hand in hand with politics because politics controls the governance of
the people I stand to fight for and protect; that was among the reasons I picked up
the appointment with the state government when I was offered. Because to me, you
must be part of the system to make the desired change we want to affect the people
Some have accused you of serving the interest of the highest bidder, true?
That is not true, I stand for fairness, equity and justice; I can never be
compromised because I am an independent- minded man with integrity of purpose for
the emancipation of the masses of the people, I mean the betterment of the poor in
society is my main focus.
You were very vociferous in your attack on the Governor and his party, the APC,
some years back to the point of calling him ‘Nesugie’, what changed your stance on
Yes, even as a man that worked with the PDP then, I celebrated the APC Governor in
the person of Comrade Adams Oshiomhole in his first tenure (2008-2012) because we
saw all he was doing to move the state forward in the positive light and I strongly
supported his re-election in 2012/2013 against even the Benin man who was the flag
bearer of the PDP, because I am not a sentimental man; Even as a PDP man then I
openly supported the re-election campaign of the Comrade Governor-Adams Oshiomhole
with my NGO- Face to Face Community Empowerment Initiative, jingles on radio and TV
etc and you can visit my facebook wall to attest to what I just said. But after his
re-election, the policies of government was now anti-people like the land use act
and the sales of Edo House in Lagos which I personally mobilized and protested
against with my colleagues in the Civil Society Organizations. This brought about
“Nesugie” because if you recall, during the 2012 re-election campaign for the
Comrade Governor, I called him “Nosagie” meaning in Benin Language “God Sent” and
when after his winning the re-election overwhelminly and he came up with obnoxious and
anti-people policies as earlier mentioned, I decided to change his name to “Nesugie”
meaning also in Benin Language “Devil Sent” because the policies were not favorable
to the people and him being a listening governor decided to withdraw those policies
after a series of protest against them; But as we speak today, the government have
listened to the plights/wishes of the people and I decided to work with the Comrade
Governor when he came seeking my support in 2015 and today I am glad to be with him
fully and his name has being reversed back to “Nosagie” meaning “God Sent”.
Can you compare the Governor’s performance in his second term compared with the
Without any form of reservations, the Comrade Governor performed better in his first
tenure than his second term although he is presently doing his best to finish
What about his performance against the previous PDP led government?
It is like comparing darkness and light! The Comrade Governor performed extremely
better than the previous PDP led government; that is, his 8 years is far better than
the 10 years of PDP led government in Edo State, in fact he is the best governor of
Edo State since 1999 to date as far as I am concern today.
About the primaries elections there is the general feeling that the Governor,
Comrade Adams Oshiomhole is backing Godwin Obaseki for the ticket, do you think that
should be the case?
Well, every man is free and entitled to his or her choice in life; For me politics
is a game on interest and numbers. The Comrade Governor is my boss officially and my
friend but I am not with him in his choice of backing Godwin Obaseki for the ticket.
As far as I respect his rights to choice of Godwin Obaseki for the APC ticket, Dr.
Pius Odubu is my choice and I will tell you some reasons just as the Comrade
Governor-Adams Oshiomhole has his reasons for choosing Godwin Obaseki too and he
must also respect my choice too, that is the beauty of democracy or democratic
You have come out to vehemently back Pius Odubu, the Gov’s deputy, why?
I made my choice of Dr. Pius Odubu not only because I have studied him to be a man
that can pilot the affairs of the State very well and also because he has worked
with the Comrade Governor to move the State to where we are today without blemish;
If the Nigeria constitution allowed the Comrade Governor to go another two term of 8
years, I would have advocated for both of them to continue both since our
constitution only allows the two term which the Comrade Governor is about to round
up in November, 2016; My wish is for his Deputy to continue from where he stops
because they both have the vision and the mission to have taking the state this far
to the enviable position we are today.
Would you not be crossing the path of the governor in that case?
No, I am not crossing his path at all; Edo State belongs to us all and as a
stakeholder I have my rights to choice of who governs me in my State and that will
never jeopardize my relationship with the Comrade Governor choice of candidate like
I earlier mentioned.
In case it’s true that the Governor is backing Godwin Obaseki and he wins what
will you do? remain in the party or move?
If that happens, I will definitely join hands with the Comrade Governor to deliver
Edo State for our party-APC and I will only disagree with him if things are not done
rightly; That is, having a free, fair and transparent Party Primary where everybody
that contested will know and be satisfied with the winner and losers alike.
Don’t you think Edo Central deserves a chance in the race?
To me, the party is supreme in this regard. If the party says it is not the turn of
Edo Central…..so be it.
Per the last budget just passed into law what areas would you have changed if
you were in charge?
If I was in charge, I would have worked more on the area of Agriculture and our
Natural Resources sector by encouraging foreign investors in that sector to come in
and invest to promote exports of goods and services thereby creating genuine
employment for our youths mainly because I am not an advocate of borrowing funds in
foreign currency (dollars) when we do not earn in foreign currency (dollars);
Although I am not an economist, that will be a matter for another day.
How would you describe the current anti corruption war at the federal level?
It has being long overdue, I am happy now that it is happening because our system was almost killed by corruption and for me, the Civil Service needs total overhaul because I believe the Civil Servants are more corrupt than the politicians and also our judiciary needs to be overhauled or sanitized too, you know what I mean. If I am given the opportunity of being the President of this country, anybody found wanting like the Rtd. Col. Dasuki issue will die by hanging with all the evidence gathered so far; And that will serve as deterrent to others in the same shoe.
What’s your response to the insinuation that the present government borrowed
money to do window dressing projects for elections reasons?
That is not correct, we see all the projects done across the State by the present
government led by the Comrade Governor and I have personally taken my time to visit
some of them and they are mind blowing to see that the government is working and I
am proud to be part of the government with all we have on ground today.
The PDP and their apologist are the ones carrying such insinuations about the
present government, and this was also among the reasons I left them because I saw
that they do not mean well for the masses of the people since they do not have
agenda that will supersede the agenda of this present government because as an
opposition party who have already ruled the state for 10 years and failed, I
expected more from them to get the minds of the people to them and not their
propaganda style of leadership. Even at that, I see them failing again because they
seem not to have learnt any lessons yet going by their intra-party democracy
whereby the present State Executives are illegally controlling the affairs of the
party without congress after their tenure is over, is this the kind of people we
want to entrust our State again? To me it is No!
Are you looking to contest any position in the future?
Hopefully, in the nearest future when my people call on me to do so. I will gladly
oblige them to serve them because for me, governance is about service to the masses
of the people.
What is your message to Edo electorates?
My advice to Edo people is simple, we all know where we are coming from and how much we have suffered in the State; We have tested two parties (PDP and APC) in the State, we should continue with the one that has served us better without sentiments which of course we all know that the PDP failed us for 10 years and the APC has done better and we all should pull our weight behind APC for betterment in the next 4-years and if APC decides to tow the negative line, then we shall also throw them out after but as of now, the APC is the party for the people! In continuity I stand with Dr. Pius Odubu because I want the continuity of good governance we have enjoyed so far in the State to continue and based on his experiences in the legislature and executive arms of government, he will and is capable of moving the State to a more enviable height than what we presently enjoy. If I am givien the opportunity to score the present administration of the Comrade Governor-Adams Oshiomhole, I will score it 65% and the reason I strongly support Dr. Pius Odubu to continue so they can score better