Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole and one of his predecessors, Lucky Igbinedion, yesterday exchanged hot words over next Wednesday’s governorship election.
Oshiomhole accused the Igbinedion’s administration of failing woefully.
The governor taunted Igbinedion, who he described as godfather of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, of being unfit to walk freely on the roads of the state.
But Igbinedion fired back, saying he pitied the PDP government that will take over from Oshiomhole because of the debt profile of the state.
Oshiomhole spoke while inagurating the 22-kilometre Iguobazuwa-Umaza-Siluko road in Ovia South West Local Government Area constructed by his administration.
He said: “By some coincidence, this location is just adjacent the market and I decided to walk round the market, and I felt good seeing the real Nigerians, the real Edo people, the real Edo women smiling, dancing, waving, showing joy and happiness.
“This, for me, is my testimonial of service because if almost eight years on the job I can go to any local government and walk into a market that you find all kinds of persons and they are all clapping, expressing joy, showing gratitude, to God be the glory.
“There are those who have governed this state who cannot come to this market, and they are there. The people’s verdict will reflect on their faces.”
But Igbinedion said the next PDP government will meet “an empty treasury and a big hole.”
The former governor said he prayed daily for the next governor to have the wisdom and ingenuity to return the state to sound footing “because the debt they have put the state is alarming and very frightening.”
Igbinedion said his administration paid backlog of 18 months salaries, paid pensioners and salaries up to date.
He said he left government without owning any debt unlike the present current administration, which according to him owes over $ 200 million.
The former governor stated: “I never stole Edo State money. I never mismanaged Edo State money. I was never charged for money laundering locally or internationally.
“Did we have the money to be stolen? We were receiving one of the lowest allocations in the federation.
“I can say categorically that my administration was one of the best and I impacted positively on the lives of our people.”