Bola Ige’s Murder: We Are Innocent, Oyediran Insists

lekan-oyediranOne of the persons arrested but later released in connection with the murder of Mr Bola Ige, Lekan Oyediran, is insisting that 24 of them arrested are innocent.

While he claims innocent of the crime, he lamented that he lost his investment in a drug store and his wife also died before he was freed.

He spoke at the 15th years remembrance and memorial lecture of Odunayo Olagbaju, who died in 2001 during the crisis that rocked Alliance for Democracy.

During the occasion held at Ile-Ife in Osun State, political associates, friends and families of the deceased eulogised him for “fighting for the oppressed”.

Mr Oyediran, who was a lawmaker in Osun State between 1999 to 2001, said those accusing them (arrested suspects) needed to be probed for Bola Ige’s death.

He said: “I have no regret. The only regret I have is that the people we fought for did not deserve it. That struggle also had a little of youthful exuberance. We didn’t fight that struggle with enough maturity that time.

“We fought a good fight. We identified with the right people but we could have also done it in a different way or with a different approach.

“All the 24 of us that were arrested in relations to the death of Bola Ige are all innocent. We didn’t know anything about it. I spent almost two years there. I lost everything. I am a pharmacist. I lost my chemist and even my wife before I came back.

“So, it is a kind of thing that makes me sad a lot. Omisore is very innocent of the killing. The investigation carried out by the Nigeria Police Force and all the security agencies exonerated Omisore and all other suspects arrested along with him. He was taken to court and acquitted, discharged and cannot be arrested until there is a new clue”.

At the event, some members of the legislative arm of government were also chided, with the key speaker, Professor Fatai Olasupo, urging opposition in the legislative arm to be more active.

“They must be active and ensure that there is transparency in governance. With what we have witnessed, governance in the state level needs to be upgraded,” he added.

Mr Bola Ige was shot dead in his bedroom in Bodija, Ibadan, at about 9:00 p.m. on December 23, 2001, after he arrived Ibadan from Lagos at about 8.30 p.m.

In July, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the Acting Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, to reopen investigation into the unresolved murder of the former Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice.

AD Candidate, Olusola Oke Decries Monetization Of Ondo Election

AD Candidate, Olusola Oke Decries Monetization Of Ondo ElectionThe governorship candidate of the Alliance for Democracy (AD) in Ondo State, Mr Olusola Oke has decried the heavy monetization of the election process which produced Mr Rotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as governor-elect.

Oke who addressed the Press in Akure on Monday, congratulated Mr Rotimi Akeredolu on his victory and commended both the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the security agents deployed to the state for being fair in the handling of their duties.

He, however, regretted that the open and free use of money to purchase votes during the election by the ruling party remains a sad commentary on the nation’s electoral process.

This development, according to him, required the urgent intervention by government if the much publicized anti-corruption agenda of the Federal Government must have meaning to Nigerians.

He said: “In the last seven years, the policy direction of the government of the day (in Ondo State) has resulted in the growth and circulation of poverty to our people.

“The resultant effect is the debilitating poverty that had made the people so vulnerable. Therefore, trading away dignity in the face of excruciating hunger during electioneering process requires little or no considerations for morals and values that defined us as a people.

“The open and free use of money to purchase votes, during the election by the ruling parties remains a sad commentary on our electoral process. This requires urgent intervention by government if the much publicized anti-corruption agenda of the Federal Government must have meaning to Nigerians.

“Offer of money for votes is worse than looting the government treasury. Apart from compromising the dignity of the people, it provides a fertile training ground for future looters of government treasury.

“The consequence of it is to render the anti-corruption fight a farce. There may be no economic matter more urgent, difficult to unravel and more sensitive to the pursuit of the average person in Ondo State than the current indignity foisted on the people by poverty, orchestrated by maladministration and priority misplacement by the current administration.

“We hope the incoming administration will address the problem of poverty so that the integrity of our electoral process will be restored.”

He noted that from the observation of the people of Ondo State, they appear confused and unsure of what would follow the immediate satisfaction from the naira handout received in consideration of the votes cast.

“They appear wondering whether the votes they delivered yesterday would restore light, revive dead industries, complete the uncompleted ones, give hundreds of thousands of unemployed graduates employment, pay arrears of salary to workers and guarantee regular payment of salary; whether their votes will make water to flow again in their unused and rusted water pipes, reduce dust on our roads, revive our education and health sectors and so on,” he stated.

Big Challenge

Oke, who recalled the event leading to his and his followers’ movement to the AD, said that the movement was necessitated by the need for “us as democrats and conscience of the people to shun the in-built perfidy and organized deception in APC as revealed during its primary election.

“We moved to AD less than six weeks before the gubernatorial election. We knew it was a big challenge and the greatest challenge was time. But we were determined in the pursuit of our dream.

“We know how bad the situation is and we are aware that the art of governance is difficult and complex, especially during trying times. The steep reduction in global oil prices from over 120 dollars per barrel to roughly 30 dollars and the huge debt profile of Ondo State present a hard challenge that requires a prepared mind and experienced hands in the saddle. We are convinced that we can no longer afford past practices.

“That was the compelling re-occurring issue that defined our struggle. We thank the people of Ondo State who believed in the struggle of Alliance for Democracy and its candidate, Chief Olusola Oke.”

He went on to give recommendations to the incoming administration: “Ondo State requires economic re-engineering, creative reform, materially changing the substance of its economic policy as well as the objectives of that policy in a way that the economic well-being of the people will be restored again.

“Therein lies the essence of progressive democratic governance and that is what our party, the Alliance for Democracy stands for.

“The incoming government therefore must urgently address the issue of ravaging poverty in the state through: Industrialization; Job/Wealth Creation; Rural Integration; Infrastructural Development; Security.”

He gave the assurance that as members of the opposition, the AD shall continue to contribute to the process of governance and would not hesitate to point, in a civilized manner, the attention of the incoming government to any area where the masses seem not to have been considered in the policy framework of governance.

“We shall voice our opinion whenever we believe any member of the incoming government strayed from the progressive calling required of the administration,” he posited.

He congratulated the governor-elect, Rotimi Akeredolu, and wished him success, praying to God to guide him as he directs the affairs of Ondo state.

Ondo Election: PDP Passes Vote Of No Confidence On INEC

Ondo Election: PDP Passes Vote Of No Confidence On INECBarely 24 hours to the Saturday, November 26 governorship elections in Ondo state, the Ahmed Makarfi-led caretaker committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) says it has no confidence in the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) conducting free and fair elections in the state.

Spokesperson to the party, Mr Dayo Adeyeye, told journalists in Abuja that the party lost its confidence in the electoral body after it substituted the name of Mr Eyitayo Jegede before it was reinstated by the Appeal Court on Wednesday.

He insisted that the electoral body had no reason not to postpone the elections to another date so as to compensate their candidate for the time lost in his campaign while the court cases lasted.

“As far as am concerned, under this circumstances, INEC is no longer independent. Its name should now be called partial national electoral commission – PNEC.

“It’s no longer independent because it seems to me that there is a cabal dictating to them everything they want to do.

“The national commissioners that are deployed to Ondo state, we have no confidence in them. They are the same people sent to Edo state to rig the elections. They rigged the elections in Edo state. So we don’t have confidence in them going to Ondo state.

“The other issue is the Ondo elections. We called on INEC severally to postpone the elections because they are part of the problem that we are facing. If they had not substituted Jegede’s name illegally, we would not have had this problem.

“I say they substituted the name illegally because they monitored the primary, the name was submitted, you accepted it and you published the name as the candidate of PDP. Then suddenly the court order came and you have two court orders. You choose the one you obey.

“And you know INEC has a panel of legal advisers who work for them; legal consultants made up of SANs. They normally refer these matters to them and they give them advice. And to the best of my knowledge, that panel gave them advice to retain Jegede’s name.”

Jegede Demands Postponement 

Ondo state governorship candidate for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Eyitayo Jegede, on Thursday called for a postponement of the election.

Mr Jegede said that he had been left with no chance of campaigning as the campaigns ended at midnight on Thursday and it was time for INEC to prove that it was indeed interested in giving all candidates equal opportunity.

Alongside the leadership of the party in Ondo state, Mr Eyitayo Jegede, on Friday stormed the INEC office to press home his demand but INEC said that it would go ahead as planned.

The Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mr Segun Agbaje, insisted: “We have passed that stage. No postponement. We are going ahead on Saturday.”

The PDP man expressed disappointment: “We are asking you to give us the same opportunity and now you say it is expensive. We say give us a level playing ground, you say it is expensive.”

Speaking later on Channels TV’s Politics Today, Mr Jegede argued that by the Electoral Act, INEC ought to display the names of candidates for 30 days.

Therefore, with his name “unlawfully removed” on October 27 and later reinstated to be displayed for only two days, it would be unfair to proceed with the election which saw other candidates’ names duly displayed for 30 days.

Ondo AD Warns Against Manipulation Of Governorship Election Result

Ondo AD Warns Against Manipulation Of Governorship Election ResultThe Alliance for Democracy (AD) has warned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies against manipulating the results of the Ondo governorship election in favour of any party, especially the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

AD’s warning comes less than 24 hours into the election which would see the people of Ondo State go to the polls to elect their governor for the next four years.

According to the statement issued in Akure, the Ondo State capital, the Director General of Olusola Oke Campaign Organization, Bola Ilori, said any attempt to manipulate the result of the election will be resisted by the good people of Ondo State.

He added that the people of the state should be allowed to choose who rules them.

The statement reads: “While we as a party are prepared for the election, we will support anything that will aid the peaceful conduct of election.

“However, we will not fold our ‎arms and allow our destinies to be determined by people who are not only political invaders but people who have subjected our people to untold hardship.

“Also, the security agencies should make sure they don’t take side. They should deal with anybody who forments trouble. Just like we have told our people, they should not allow anybody to dictate what they will do to them but make sure they keep vigil and defend their votes.

“We are also aware of plans to cause trouble in Akoko Land, Ondo South senatorial district and other areas considered to be strongholds of AD.

“If President Muhammadu Buhari cannot deliver the dividends of democracy he promised the people, he should not cause chaos in the state. He should warn INEC and security agencies against enacting a replica of 1983 political crisis in the state.”

Ondo Election: AD Candidate, Olusola Oke Starts Campaign in Akure

Ondo Election: AD Candidate, Olusola Oke Starts Campaign in AkureAlliance for Democracy (AD) Candidate in the Ondo State governorship election, Olusola Oke and his deputy, Ganny Dauda, have been presented the flag of the party.

‎The event held at the Democracy Park in Akure, the state capital and was witnessed by leaders of the AD, including its National Leader, Senator Mojisoluwa Akinfenwa, the National Chairman, Joseph Avazi and other top officials of the party.

The National Legal Adviser of the party, Kehinde Aworele, who had been in court to challenge the emergence of Oke and his deputy was also present to tell supporters that there was no more crisis in AD.

“There was a court action based on the misunderstanding on the appropriateness of Chief Olusola Oke’s emergence and because his victory is sure we don’t want some people to go to court after his victory to challenge him.

“The fact that I am here addressing this mammoth crowd today shows that there is no more crisis in the party, no cracks within the party, we are one indivisible party.

“There are several means of getting a case out of court; by abandonment, by withdrawal and by discontinuance. There is no more case in court as we have resolved the issues,” he said.

In his address, the National Leader of AD, Senator Mojisoluwa Akinfenwa described Olusola Oke as the inheritor of the Awolowo mores.

He gave the assurance that when Oke is elected and forms his government, Ondo would have set itself on a path to rise again.

“For 13 years, we have been in the wilderness, now it has pleased God to give us a leader that is capable of putting Ondo back on tracks.

“If you look at the PDP, it is full of crises, people deceive people, they are at each other’s throats. The APC too is not faring better, they are an amalgam of strange bed fellows who cannot deliver on their promises.

“But we are happy today that the party of Papa Obafemi Awolowo, that of Papa Adekunle Ajasin and Papa Adebayo Adefarati is here and I want you all to vote for the AD.

“If you vote for Olusola Oke, he will replicate all those good programmes of old, he will revamp our education, bring back the revival of our agricultural sector, education shall also be brought back to reckoning,” the AD leader assured.

Earlier in his short remarks, the AD National Chairman, Joseph Avazi said that the AD was poised to form the next government given the spontaneous show of love for a party that merely came into reckoning in barely two months.

According to him, a new dawn is now breaking in Ondo State and AD is set to bring back the lost glory of the Sunshine State. We have ruled this state before, this is our second coming and we shall not disappoint you.

In his acceptance speech, Olusola Oke promised that under his watch, Ondo State would be better and the people would thrive under his administration.

“Some people have been out on campaigns of calumny against me that I will abandon most of the projects I will meet on ground. I want to assure you all that we are not out to destroy whatever we meet but to build on whatever we meet on ground.”‎

“The priority of my government shall be the good of the people of Ondo State. I greet our mothers, we shall ensure we give you life abundance, we shall give you money to trade. Our workers shall receive their salaries and other entitlements as and when due.

“Our youths shall be gainfully employed as we shall wake up all our dead industries and make them functional again.

“I will be in a hurry to deliver good governance, all our dead industries will be completed in a hurry. We shall all laugh and be glad that we voted the best party, the Alliance for Democracy, into power on November 26, 2016, “Olusola Oke assured the cheering crowd.

While further affirming that he would be dedicated to the people’s  welfare, be accountable to them at all times, he pleaded with the people to ensure that they all come out on November 26, 2016 to vote for the Alliance for Democracy.

Former Ogun Governor, Olusegun Osoba Returns To APC

Olusegun OsobaFormer Governor of Ogun State, Olusegun Osoba, has returned to his former political fold where he left years ago from the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN).

Top leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Sunday met to receive Osoba back into their fold at his residence in Lagos State.

The party leaders present were former Governor of Lagos State, Bola Tinubu, former Governor of Ogun State, Bisi Akande, Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Oluranti Adebule, who represented the Governor of Lagos State, Akinwunmi Ambode.

Mr Osoba left the defunct ACN after a party infighting which took him and his supporters to the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in the 2015 general elections.

He is seen as one of the SDP founders.

Mr Osoba was elected on two different occasions as Governor of Ogun State; first from January 1992 until November 1993 on the platform of the SDP.

He and others were removed from office by the administration of General Sani Abacha on 17 November 1993.

After the return to democracy in 1999, he was elected again as Governor of Ogun State on the platform of the Alliance for Democracy (AD), holding office between May 1999 and May 2003.

Election Violence: Ogun Police Command Reads Riot Act To Politicians

PoliceAs political activities gather momentum,the Ogun State Police command  has read the riot act to politicians against violence during their campaigns, saying the command would not hesitate to arrest and prosecute any politician and  political party found culpable.

The Deputy Commissioner of Police, Ogun state police command, Mr Sina Olukolu, who represented the commissioner of police gave the warning during a sensitisation meeting with members of political parties held at the police officers mess in Abeokuta, the state capital.

The command also  warned against religious, ethnic sentiments and use of inciting statements during campaigns.

Although, some members of the political parties were not present at the sensitisation meeting, this did not stop the meeting from holding.

Members of the Social Democratic Party, Labour Party, Alliance For Democracy, All Progressives Grand Alliance were at hand to listen to what the command had to say.

Inciting statements, unlawful gatherings, religious and ethnic sentiments are now prohibited by the command, the police  said, noting that they were working towards recording peace before, during and after the elections in the state.

Some of members of political parties who attended the meeting  commended the command, expressing their commitment to abide by all laid down guidelines.

Beyond these pledges and promises, parties in the state  must be seen  to be doing those things that would encourage discipline among members while security operative discharge their duties without fear of favour.