There was a clash between Oshiomhole and Obaseki factions at the airport road.
No fewer than 15 people were injured during the clash, which occurred about 5pm when Oshiomhole, who arrived in Benin on Thursday, was leaving the airport for his house.
It was learnt the clash started around the APC secretariat on the airport road, where Obaseki supporters were meeting.
A Benin resident, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, “When Oshiomhole and his supporters were coming from the airport, Obaseki group thought they were coming to dislodge them from the secretariat. It was at that point that the clash started and 15 people were injured.”
The deputy governor later visited the injured people who were receiving treatments at the Edo Specialist Hospital, Benin at 10pm on Thursday.
Oshiomhole, who reacted while addressing party members, said, “I know you are hurt with what we are passing through here but I want to plead with you don’t be provoked. Any reasonable party leader will be happy to welcome people from another party into his party.
“Particularly when those coming were people who fought us in the last election. And when you look at the margin then it was like 50,000. So we are in Benin to welcome them but you could see how their thugs are unleashing mayhem on people.
I am not a coward, I am not afraid of fight – Oshiomhole
“But I want to tell you, the APC is our house and we will not destroy it neither are we going to allow anybody to destroy it. We don’t want anyone to be killed so please don’t fight back. Those who know me know that I am not a coward , I am not afraid of a fight. But I will not and I urge you to remain calm.
“We are getting conflicting reports now. The IG ordered the Commissioner of Police to give us protection for our rally, but we are being told now that the same authority said it had been cancelled. But I am going to make calls and find out what the problem is, if the police are saying they cannot protect a political rally.
“I will find out and let you people know. But even if they said we cannot hold it, please don’t fight anybody. I will meet them and find out when it will hold. But the rally will still hold some day. We have the right of association. This is not the first time we are seeing situations like this, but I can assure you it will not last forever.
“No condition is permanent. We must do everything to keep the APC in Edo State no matter what the devil thinks. The APC is our house so we must resist any temptation to fight back. We must remember that our President, is a peaceful man. We must remain peaceful and go home and tell everyone, we remain strong. Nobody can shake our spirits. We will receive our brothers into the party to fortify our party,” he said.