Twenty-four hours after his convoy was allegedlly attacked by some policemen in Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State, Governor Kayode Fayemi yesterday described the attack as an assassination attempt on him
Some policemen led by Supol Serenkele had on Sunday allegedly tear-gassed Fayemi’s convoy and disarmed his security detail during a rally organised by All Progressives Congress (APC) to conduct symbolic cleansing around Ado Ekiti following the visit of President Goodluck Jonathan on Saturday to present the governorship flag to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Mr. Ayodele Fayose.
At the end of the incident, one Taiwo Akinola was shot and killed by the police.
Making his first reaction on the Sunday incident at a press conference in Ado Ekiti yesterday, Fayemi, who disclosed the alleged police brutality on his person and members of the APC, said the force had displayed high level of disrespect to his office as the Chief Security Officer of the state and the people’s representative.
Also commenting on the incident, members of the Ekiti caucus at the National Assembly have called on President Jonathan and the Inspector General of Police (IG), Mr. Mohammed Abubakar, to immediately redeploy the Mopol Commander, Mr. Gabriel Serenkele out of the state over his insult on Fayemi.
National Assembly members who attended the press conference included: Senator Babafemi Ojudu(Ekiti Central), Senator Olubunmi Adetumbi(North), Senator Tony Adeniyi(South), Reps Oyetunde Ojo(Ekiti Central 2), Ife Arowosoge(Ekiti South 1), Bamidele Faparusi(Ekiti South 2) and Bimbo Daramola(Ekiti North 1).
Describing the incident as an “act of lawlessness on the part of the police,” the governor said: “My immediate interpretation of what happened yesterday (Sunday) is that there was an assault on the government and the people of the state and if one were to be extreme in one’s interpretation, we could go on and say it is assassination attempt on the governor of the state.
Bemoaning the death of the victim of the alleged police brutality, the governor stated that, “The death of Taiwo Akinola, was entirely avoidable. It was an avoidable death. It was supposed not to have happened at all, and I am sadden that this as taken place. It’s very unfortunate.
The governor urged the people of the state to be steadfast and resilient in their resolve to ensure that the will of the people prevails in the election.
Also expressing resentment on behalf of the members of the National Assembly, Senator Ojudu, who spoke on behalf of his colleagues, described the attack on the governor as an insult to the people of the state, alleging that Supol Serenkele behaviour was unprofessional and openly partisan.
Meanwhile, a group called, the Elders’ Forum of Ekiti Labour Party, has described Opeyemi Bamidele of the Labour Party (LP) as the best candidate among those contesting the governorship election, saying he will liberate the state from the stranglehold of foreign-backed leaders.
The group also said the current spate of political violence in the state would have been avoided if their efforts were not frustrated by Governor Kayode Fayemi.
Briefing the press in Ado-Ekiti yesterday, the Chairman of the group, Prof Tunde Oluwasanmi, said a group under the aegis of Ekiti State Elders Forum, that had planned to convey a meeting of all political actors and make them sign the famous Ido Declaration to compel them to conduct their activities in peaceful manner, was frustrated by the governor.
The Professor of Medicine said his group decided to support Bamidele of the LP for the governorship because he was the best for the job.
Also, the Ekiti State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Alhaji Alilu Pai has disclosed that the National Chairman of Independent National Electoral Commission, (INEC) Prof. Attahiru Jega is to personally lead team of the Commission’s top hierarchy to conduct the June 21 governorship poll in Ekiti State.
According to him, Jega is to be accompanied to the State by six National Commissioners and supported by all the Resident Electoral Commissioners in the neighboring states of Ekiti.
Pai stated this while hosting a Non-Governmental Organisation, “Peace initiatives on Election”, adding that Jega’s decision to be in the state for the election was borne of his commitment to a thorough exercise.
He said apart from leading the team that would conduct the poll, Jega and his men would also supervise the exercise in a number of places to ensure fairness to all the participating parties.
According to him, all logistics arrangements had been concluded towards ensuring that case of electoral materials arriving venue of voting late does not arise.
However, the Chairman of PDP Governors’ Forum, Chief Godswill Akpabio, has described the presentation of the PDP flag to Mr. Ayo Fayose as the party’s flag-bearer in the June 21, governorship in Ekiti State as a political movement showing that the party would win the election.
Akpabio also appealed to Ekiti people to vote massively for PDP in the forthcoming governorship election in the state, assuring them that their votes would count.
Akpabio spoke in Ado-Ekiti last Saturday during the presentation of flag to its candidate, Chief Ayodele Fayose.