Commissioner for Minerals, Oil, and Gas in Edo State, Joseph Ikpea, has resigned from Governor Godwin Obaseki’s cabinet ahead of the September 19 governorship election in the state.

In the resignation letter dated September 9 and addressed to the governor, Ikpea said it’s difficult for him to abandon his supporter most of whom are members of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

He added that the Obaseki-led administration did not acknowledge his leadership role.

Recall that Obaseki, who became the governor of Edo State in 2016 on the platform of the APC, defected to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in June 2020, after the APC disqualified him from contesting for its ticket to participate in the forthcoming election.

PDP grants waiver to Godwin Obaseki and also shifts primaries to June 25. (Twitter/GovWike)
PDP grants waiver to Godwin Obaseki and also shifts primaries to June 25. (Twitter/GovWike)

In his resignation letter, the commissioner also cited a lack of trust and respect as one of the reasons for resigning from Obaseki’s cabinet.

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The letter reads, “This is to inform you that I am resigning my present appointment. I want to sincerely thank his Excellency, Mr Godwin Obaseki, for the opportunity given to me to serve under his administration as the Commissioner for Minerals, Oil and Gas.

“One of the reasons why I am resigning is that politics is all about interest, trust and respect for one another, but I have never seen anything of this till date, and I am also not sure of it even if there is tomorrow.

“Moreover, the party that’s known today as All Progressive Congress APC, was brought to Esan south LGA by me, and over 90% of my supporters are APC members till date, so it is difficult to leave the house I built. Considering also that this administration did not recognise my leadership role, even as a commissioner I get information either from ward Chairmen, LGA Chairman, or SSA to Mr. Governor”.

Ikpea is the third commissioner to resign from Obaseki’s administration in the last three months.

Recall that in June, Paul Ohonbamu, the state Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, resigned two weeks before Obaseki joined the PDP.

In July, the state’s Commissioner for Environment and Sustainability, Omoua Oni-Okpaku, also resigned her appointment with the state government.