The Ogun State Government has warned groups against insightful and provocative statements capable of causing an ethnic crisis in the state.
This is according to a statement issued on Sunday by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Dapo Abiodun, Kunle Somorin.
Somorin noted that the warning is sequel to video clips, making the rounds on the social media posted by certain individuals and groups to the effect that some ethnic groups should leave the South-West region within 48 hours.
The governor’s spokesman advised those concerned to “desist from heating up the polity, fanning the ember of discord among ethnic groups in the state.”
For Somorin, the state government considers such pronouncements unfortunate, provocative, reckless and irresponsible.
“Ogun will remain home to all Nigerians and foreigners who have legitimate reasons to live, work, visit or do business here. We shall also protect their lives and properties and look after their wellness, welfare and wellbeing,” he said.
“It is a well-known fact that Yoruba, especially of Ogun state extraction, are cosmopolitan, urbane and too civilized to discriminate against people on account of their ethnic origin, religion or circumstances of birth.
“These unpatriotic individuals neither represent the views of the Yoruba race that is reputed to be accommodating, tolerant and hospitable. They are definitely not speaking for the Yoruba and the good people of Ogun state.
“We advise that rather than dissipating energies on divisive ventures, YYF and their ilk should deploy more time and resources to support causes that promote Nigeria’s unity especially good inter and intra ethnic relations within the context of our unity in diversity.”
Somorin explained that security agents have been put on red alert to be more vigilant, apprehend and deal decisively with people disguising as promoters of self-serving Yoruba agenda.
The Ogun state governor, Dapo Abiodun has inaugurated an eight-man judicial panel of investigation to probe the alleged human rights abuses and police brutality in the state.
Justice Solomon Olugbemi (Rtd) will be heading the panel while Oluwatosin Ogundele is the secretary.
Addressing the panel members at the State Executive Chamber of the governor’s office in the state capital, Abiodun charged them to discharge their assignment with the utmost sense of responsibility to the people of the state
The judicial panel of investigation which has six months to discharge its responsibility has as part of its terms of reference, to receive and investigate complaints of police brutality and human rights abuse, evaluate evidence brought before it, and recommend compensation where necessary
The panel has the conference room of the new judiciary complex Kobape, where residents are expected to submit their memoranda.
Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, has appointed members of three committees on cases of police brutalities in the state.
This comes as youths continue the #EndSARS protests in Ogun and other parts of the country.
The committees are Judicial Panel of Investigation, Special Security and Human Rights Committee, and Human Rights Complaints Office.
Governor Abiodun’s Chief Press Secretary, Kunle Somorin, disclosed this in a statement on Saturday.
Justice Solomon Olugbemi (rtd) is the chairman of the Judicial Panel of Investigation which has the Chief State Counsel at the State Ministry of Justice, Mrs Oluwatosin Ogundele, as its secretary.
Its members are Olayinka Folarin (Chairman, Ogun State Coalition of Civil Societies), Omonajevwe Abiri (International Federation of Women Lawyers – FIDA), and Deputy Inspector General of Police Babatunde Ogunyanwo (rtd).
Others are AbdulJabar Ayelagbe (Chairman, National Youth Council, Ogun State Chapter), Bamgbose Tomiwa, (NANS Chairman, Ogun State), and Aisekegbe Momodu (National Human Rights Commission – NHRC, Ogun State).
According to the statement, the Committee is to receive and investigate complaints of police brutality, human rights violations and related extra-judicial killings in the state.
It also has the mandate to evaluate evidence presented and recommend compensation and other remedial measures for victims, where appropriate.
On the other hand, Governor Abiodun is the chairman of the Special Security and Human Rights Committee which has heads of the security agencies in Ogun, as well as head of any police special tactical unit charged with fighting armed robbery and other violent crimes, as members.
Babatunde Adeluola is representing the youth while representatives of the civil society are Peju Osoba of Child First Welfare International, and Obatungashe Adebayo who is the deputy national president of the Campaign for Democracy (CD).
“This Committee is charged, amongst others, with the task of ensuring the protection of the rights of citizens by all security and law enforcement agencies; monitor the prosecution of any officer indicted by the Presidential Panel on Police Reforms; and entertain complaints of human rights violations from the State’s Human Rights Complaints Office,” the statement added.
The trio of Joseph Ogunniyi who is the Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Ota Branch; Bamidele Adebayo who is the Director of the Department of Citizens Rights at the State Ministry of Justice; and Shodeinde Oluwaponmile who is the Ogun State Coordinator of the NHRC; are in charge of the Human Rights Complaints Office.
The committee is to facilitate easy access of complainants to prompt attention and assistance and give regular reports to the Special Security and Human Rights Committee for action.
Somorin stated that the appointments were in line with the resolution of the National Economic Council at its meeting on Thursday.
He noted that a seed fund of N50 million has been set aside as a start-up amount to enable payment of monetary compensation to deserving victims, under the Victims’ Support Fund.
In addition, the governor’s aide said his principal has announced the setting up of the Ogun State Human Rights Complaints Reporting Portal.
This, according to him, will be accessible to all citizens of the state to upload documentary and audio/ video evidence of cases of abuse.
Somorin hinted that that state government would establish a forensic laboratory to aid and support police investigations and crime scene management.
He added that the state would invest in the continuous training of police officers on investigation best practices, community policing, and intelligence gathering.
“The governor assured citizens that the committees need to be allowed a chance to activate measures to end human rights violations and compensate victims of previous abuses.
“The Committees will be inaugurated next week,” the statement said.
Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun says Nigerian leaders must ensure a paradigm shift on matters concerning the youths, saying that leaders had always taken the youths for granted in the time past and for too long.
He disclosed this on Wednesday in Abeokuta when addressing the #ENDSARS campaigners who marched on his office in a peaceful protest at Oke-Mosan in the state capital.
“I think that in times past, we have sort of taken you for granted and I am saying that with all sense of responsibility,” Governor Abiodun said.
“We have taken our youths for granted because the issues you are raising today are not new to us. They are issues we have been living with for so many years.”
The governor said that the Federal government had no choice but to listen to the voice of the protesters, adding that the Nigeria Police and other security services need to put a stop to the brutalities being experienced across the country.
“The youths have a voice that must be given attention. The whole country has listened to you. As a matter of fact, the whole world is listening to you.
“You have demonstrated commitment, you have shown that you can rise up when the occasion warrant it and you can speak out,” he added.
He, however, appealed to the youths to give the government a chance to start implementing the needed reforms of the Force, noting that their action was an indication that they are citizens whose voices matter.
“Really, you have succeeded and I think what you have to do is to allow us to begin to see the implementation of these reforms. You know the implementation will not be instant because it will take time for them to be visible.
“I want to plea with you, let us give these reforms a chance to work. Let us try and see how to wind down these protests.
“You have the right to protest anytime as no one can take that away from you. What we must ask ourselves is, is the government committed, have they shown symbolism? I believe government symbolism.”
While acknowledging that there has been a breakdown of trust between the government and the citizens, the governor explained that for it to be restored, citizens must trust their government to do what was right at all times.
Governor Abiodun said he has identified with the pains of the protesters and as their representative, it was imperative he act on their feedback, assuring that he and his colleagues were deliberating on how to ensure that their voice was not only heard, but demands were met.
He said the government would not charge those arrested in the course of the protest as he has ordered the release of those arrested for vandalizing a police station and his Deputy’s car by the security agents.
All students except those in tertiary institutions have been given an automatic promotion to the next class by the Ogun State Government which announced September 21 for the reopening of schools in the state for the first term of 2020/2021 session.
The Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Kunle Somorin, made the announcement in a statement on Monday.
This is in addition to the earlier resumption of students in exit classes.
According to Mr Somorin, the State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, approved the reopening of schools for all classes in primary and secondary schools, Technical and Vocational Colleges, and Tertiary Institutions.
He noted that a resumption schedule for public schools has been developed as part of efforts to meet the COVID-19 guidelines.
Students in primary one to three will attend classes from 8.00 am to 11.00 am, while pupils in primary four to six will learn from 12 noon to 3:00 pm.
In secondary schools, students in JSS 1 to JSS 3 are to attend classes from 8.00 am to 11.00 am and students in senior classes will be in school from mid-day through to 3:00 pm.
However, the CPS noted that technical and vocational colleges will operate their normal school hours of 8.00 am to 2.00 pm, while tertiary institutions are “allowed to commence reopening from 21 September 2020 as may be determined by their respective management.”
The Governor’s spokesman added that private schools are expected to take necessary measures to meet the COVID-19 protocols for physical distancing, among other requirements.
He stated that students between the ages of 3 to 5 will not be resuming in public schools until the next phase of schools’ reopening.
“It should be noted that the government had earlier announced that all students had been given an automatic promotion to the next class, including automatic placement for primary 6 students in public primary schools into JSS1 of public secondary schools.
“However, primary 6 students desirous of placement into the State-owned Boarding Schools will sit for the Common Entrance Examination on Saturday, 12 September 2020,” the statement read in part.
“The hitherto JSS3 students who have now been promoted to SS1 will write their Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) in October 2020.”
Mr Somorin noted that part of the COVID-19 guidelines issued for reopening of schools is still in effect because the management of the virus has been deliberate in ensuring safety for children while minimising the disruption in the school learning calendar.
Read the full statement below:
The Ogun State Government has announced Monday, 21 September 2020 for the reopening of schools in the state for the first term of 2020/2021 session in addition to the earlier resumption of students in SS3 who are currently writing the West African School Certificate Examination.
In a Press Statement issued in Abeokuta by Kunle Somorin, his Chief Press Secretary, Governor Dapo Abiodun announced that this second phase of the reopening of schools is extended to all classes in primary and secondary schools, Technical and Vocational Colleges, and Tertiary Institutions. However, as part of the efforts to meet the COVID-19 guidelines for school operations, the school hours are staggered as follows for public schools.
Primary 1 to primary 8.00am to 11.00am
Primary 4 to Primary 612.00noon to 3.00pm
JSS 1 to JSS38.00am to 11.00am
SS1 to SS312.00noon to 3.00pm
Technical and Vocational will operate their normal school hours from 8.00 am to 2.00 pm
Early Child Care Development and Education classes i.e 3-5 years of age will not be resuming in public schools until the next phase of schools’ reopening.
Private schools are also expected to take necessary measures to meet the COVID-19 protocols for physical distancing, among other requirements.
Tertiary institutions are allowed to commence reopening from 21 September 2020 as may be determined by their respective Management.
It should be noted that the government had earlier announced that all students had been given an automatic promotion to the next class, including automatic placement for primary 6 students in public primary schools into JSS1 of public secondary schools.
However, primary 6 students desirous of placement into the State-owned Boarding Schools will sit for the Common Entrance Examination on Saturday, 12 September 2020.
The hitherto JSS3 students who have now been promoted to SS1 will write their Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) in October 2020.
The Statement emphasised that the COVID-19 guidelines earlier issued for reopening of schools are still in effect and include:
Provision of Sick bays / Isolation rooms in schools.
Training and designation of some teachers as first-line responders
Use of face masks
A regular check of body temperature with infrared thermometers
Provision of adequate hand washing facilities and alcohol-based sanitisers for students and teachers;
Maintaining physical distancing of 2 meters
Decontamination of schools prior to resumption;
Suspension of the general assembly.
“Our approach to COVID-19 pandemic management has been deliberate, methodical, focused, inclusive and carefully balanced between life and livelihood and this has manifested in the steps we have adopted to the reopening of schools, ensuring the safety of our children whilst minimising disruption in their education. The guidelines are applicable to all schools in the state whether private or public.
I have directed the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology to provide all public schools with the required items to meet the guidelines and private school owners are enjoined to do the same.
I charge our students to take full benefits of the reopening of the schools for their educational advancement and wish them a very fulfilling 2020/2021 academic year”, the Governor said.
He stressed that it is important for his administration to focus on providing key infrastructure across the state, in order to boost business confidence and industrialisation.
“We see ourselves as the expansion corridor for Lagos and it requires that we provide the right infrastructure to allow people to come between Lagos and our state and to go back.
“In our first one year, we have intervened in almost 90km of roads, out of which 22km has been completed and they are ongoing. We are now going to the next phase – these are internal and border roads.”
The governor said he also came to inform President Buhari on the challenges facing the state, one of which is the deplorable condition of the two major roads, which he said is the only link to Nigeria’s biggest industrial hub, the Agbara Industrial Estate.
He stressed that the situation with the Agbara-Atan road has become a major threat to investors and multinationals in the state.
“Our biggest industrial hub in this country is the Agbara Industrial Estate; there is a road that goes from Agbara to Lusada and to Atan, that road leads the estate and it is in such deplorable state that trailers coming from the port to the industrial estate and back, continue to have accidents and delays, to the point where some of the multinationals are threatening to leave the country.
“We have decided to intervene in this road as a state and we want the President to know that we are going to construct this road at our expense and inform the Federal Ministry of works that we will be making the demand for a refund of the construction of that road,” he stated.
Stressing further, governor Abiodun said the plan for the Lagos-Ota-Abeokuta road, is for Ogun and Lagos States to collaborate to rebuild the road and commercialise it, noting it would be impossible for the Federal Government to attend to all the roads under its control at the same time.
“Lagos, Ota and Abeokuta road is the second busiest road in the country, and as a state government with Lagos, we have asked Mr President to transfer the road to us and we will commercialise it.”
He, however, noted that President Buhari was pleased with the discussion and has promised to give the necessary support to see the economic growth of the region.
The governor also revealed that 1870 houses will be built across three senatorial districts as part of efforts to sustain the economic development in the state.
Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, on Saturday expressed “deep pain and grief” over the passing of Senator Buruji Kashamu.
Kashamu’s death was announced on Saturday after he succumbed to COVID-19 complications, according to former colleague Senator Ben Murray-Bruce said.
In a statement released by his spokesman, Kunle Somorin, Abiodun described Kashamu’s demise as one death too many and a devastating blow to the nation’s political family.
“I received the sad news of the passing of Senator Buruji Kashamu today, 8 August 2020, with a deep pain and grief that words cannot capture. On behalf of my family, the Government, and good people of Ogun State, I convey our deepest condolences,” he said.
“His demise further diminishes the tribe of my close political associates. He was a large-hearted politician and courageous fighter for whatever cause he believed in.
“He was not just a loving personality, a generous giver, and someone who lived for others, he was to many a beacon of hope of a better tomorrow. This painful exit is much more than the end of an individual.”
The governor described the late senator as a phenomenon who was faithful to his principles and convictions and even his critics would attest to his tenacity of purpose.
“Our brother and friend was a consummate politician and patriot who will be sorely missed within and outside Ogun State for his larger than life disposition,” he said.
“Posterity will accord him his due recognition for his legacies of service and forthrightness. He was a worthy Ambassador of Ogun State.
“May Allah forgive and admit him to Aljannah Firdaus and grant the family, friends, and associates the patience to bear this painful loss.”
The Ogun state government has stepped down its stand which held that the COVID-19 test is to be used as a mandatory requirement for returning students in exit classes.
Governor Dapo Abiodun announced the cancellation of the initial injunction via a Twitter statement on Monday.
In his communique which was titled “Ogun Makes COVID-19 Test Free For All Returning SS3 Boarding Students”, Governor Abiodun further stated that the admittance of students into boarding houses in private secondary schools will be at the discretion of the management and the Parents Teachers Association (PTA) of such private schools.
Parents of pupils in private secondary schools in Ogun had protested over the request of N25,000 COVID-19 test fee by the government, but the governor has assured that the test will now be carried out free of charge for all returning students.
The governor ordered the Government Laboratories in the state to carry out tests for all returning SS3 boarding students at no cost.
He also directed that all those who have paid for tests be refunded.
According to the governor, the new directive has become imperative because the health of children remains an utmost priority to his administration.
The governor, however, noted that in view of the total number of boarding students to be tested (5,340 private and 500 public), and bearing in mind the limitation of the state’s installed testing capacity of 500 tests per day, it may not be feasible for all boarding students to get tested and get their results prior to the resumption or even exams which commences on 17th August 2020.
He recommended that students who do not have to stay in boarding houses should attend school from home, especially those with underlying health conditions. Adding that face masks will be availed to all students in both private and public schools.
Ogun State has banned all forms of gathering above 20 persons across the state during and after the Eid-El Kabir festive period as parts of efforts to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Governor Dapo Abiodun announced the news on Wednesday as he urged Muslim faithful to observe their individual prayers at home.
The Governor also set August 14 as a tentative date for the re-opening of religious centres across the state.
I understand that Eid-el-Kabir (called Ileya) will be on Friday, 31st July, 2020, but the COVID-19 circumstances will unfortunately deter the usual Eid prayers, partying or any other form of gathering of more than 20 persons at a time.
Final year secondary school students in the state are expected to resume on August 4.
“I understand that Eid-el-Kabir (called Ileya) will be on Friday, 31st July, 2020, but the COVID-19 circumstances will, unfortunately, deter the usual Eid prayers, partying or any other form of gathering of more than 20 persons at a time,” the Governor said while congratulating the Chief Imam of Egbaland, Sheikh Sa’addallah Alade Bamigbola, who made a courtesy visit to Abiodun’s office in Oke-Mosan.
“I thank the entire Muslim Ummah for their thoughtfulness and cooperation as we observe this year’s prayers solemnly and at home with our individual families,” Abiodun added.
According to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Ogun state has recorded 1,336 cases of the novel coronavirus and 23 deaths, as of Wednesday evening.
The Ogun state governor, Dapo Abiodun has extended the current relaxation of lockdown being enjoyed by residents of the state by a week with the window of relaxation on Monday,Wednesday and Friday from 7am to 5pm each day till the 31st of this month
Addressing a press conference at his Okemosan office in the state capital, the governor said that the second phase of the relaxation is to commence on the 1st of June,with more opportunities for residents to engage in further business activities.
While decrying the level of compliance in the state which he said has resulted in an increase in community spreading of the coronavirus, he however, noted that more measures are being put in place to increase testing and analysis of samples.
Below is a full text of the governor’s speech as presented earlier on Friday.
Good people of Ogun State, see highlights of my press briefing on COVID-19 today, 22nd May, 2020 with updates on the lockdown, and response strategies and facilities:
We have experienced the highest increase in the number of cases in the last one week since the index case was recorded.
While we have discharged a total of 36 cases, we recorded 49 new cases in the last one week (with 37% increase), bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 183.
As a testament to the fact that we are set to increase our testing capacity from 450 to 600 per day, the NCDC today arrived the State to certify our Molecular Laboratory in OOUTH, Sagamu.
However, having it in mind that confirmed cases keep increasing due to the flagrant disregard for measures and restrictions, especially the interstate travel ban, we will be maintaining the lockdown window on Monday 25th May, 2020, Wednesday 27th, and ….Friday 29th between 7am (morning) and 5pm (evening).
As an instance, 4 people travelling in from Niger State were intercepted by Officers in Abeokuta four days ago, while 19 people travelling in through illegal land borders from Togo and Cote d’Ivoire were intercepted and quarantined at Idiroko on Wednesday.
But we have charged 224 lockdown and curfew violators to Mobile Courts already.
To enhance our healthcare capacity, we are already renovating select Primary Healthcare Centres across the State, while we have trained 200 personnel with the PHCs & some private health facilities, which would be accredited by the NCDC on the specialised handling management of the virus. As we include CDAs and community leaders in the training, about 2,500 participants would eventually be trained. Involving our community leaders would increase sensitisation on curbing community spread.
As we prepare for full business operations and further ease of the lockdown which will commence on 1st June, 2020, we have adopted the “See and Treat” protocol, where symptomatic patients would start receiving treatment even before results are out.
I am glad to announce that many establishments with large staff bases have begun carrying out COVID-19 tests, and I am hopeful others would follow suit.
We will commence the third phase of the relief package distribution over the weekend, to cushion the effects of the COVID-19 restrictions.
While this cannot relieve us all due to the restrictions put in place, let’s please be aware that this is the great sacrifice we must all pay to stay alive, as only the human that is alive can pursue their dreams.
I congratulate our Muslim brother and sisters, as we look forward to the successful end of the Ramadan Fast. Our Government aligns with the position of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), whose Secretary General, Professor Is-haq Oloyede, is a proud son of our dear State, and enjoin the Muslim faithful in the State to comply with the Council’s directive to offer their Eid prayers at home.
May Almighty Allah (SWT) keep us to witness many more years of Ramadan.
I appreciate our frontline workers and the entire Ogun State populace for their sacrifices, support and cooperation, including the voluntary humanitarian donations from well-meaning private individuals and organisations.