Etsako Central gets another Akhigbe as council chairman


In a move regarded by pundits as deft and also aimed at consolidating its grip on power ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Edo State Government took everyone by surprise by announcing the appointment of LG Liaison Officers for each of the 18 local government areas in the state.

And, without waiting for the usual government bureaucracy and fanfare that often trails such landmark decisions, the state governor, Mr. Goodwin Obaseki, moved swiftly to swear in the 18 lucky fellows who will now have to steer the affairs of their respective councils pending the proper election of the council chairmen.

Though the state government clandestinely tagged the appointees as “Liaison Officers”, the full implications of the action are not however lost on political watchers who did not waste time in decoding the political undertones behind the move.

After a careful and in-depth analysis of the merits and the demerits of the state government,’s action, pundits concluded they found no justification for the appointments except the need for self-preservation, saying the appointments were an opportunity for the state to the government to ensure “its loyalists” took effective control of the local governments to help consolidate power.

One of the uniqueness in the appointment of “Liaison Officers for the 18 council areas across the state is the leeway it provided for the emergence of another Akhigbe as the LO for the Etsako Central local government area.

The name “Akhigbe” is a household one in the politics of Etsako Central and even stretched to the national level. The late Admiral Mike Okhai Akhigbe was the first person to make the name popular when he became the military administrator of Lagos State and later served as the Chief of General Staff, CGS, under the Gen Abdulsalam Abubakar.

Going by his position in that government, he was effectively the number two man in the government and also played a key role in the creation of Etsako Central.

Also, the first executive chairman of the local government between 1999 and 2003 was the late Chief Joseph Akhigbe who happened to be the senior brother of the late CGS.

Then, in 2017, Hon John Akhigbe, another Akhigbe, though not in any way, related to the first two, was elected council boss. His vice chairman was Hon Kelvin Akhigbe; indeed, a tale of the two Akhigbe’s in the saddle.

This time around Etsako central is again to be administered by Hon Kelvin Akhigbe who, in 2017, served as the vice chairman of the Etsako Central, resurfacing as the Liaison officer for the same council.

Hon Kelvin hails from the Anegbete axis of the council area and is not in any way related to the older Akhigbe’s who were from Fugar.

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