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Violence in Wasimi
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Violence in Wasimi
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Violence in Wasimi
Following the recent spate of violence in Wasimi in the Ewekoro Local Government Area of Ogun State, the State Police Command has set up an Investigation team led by the Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of Investigations - ACP Aminu Alhassan. The team is to submit its report within a week.
The Wasimi incident is the second time in a week, the crisis in the Ogun State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has taken a violent turn in a battle for the control of the Party machinery.
A meeting called on Thursday by the Senator for Ogun Central Senatorial District - Gbenga Obadara in Wasimi, was disrupted when thugs unleashed mayhem culminating in the shooting of nine Party members and Sergeant Sunday Akinbode - the Police Orderly attached to Senator Obadara. Also caught up in the melee was Federal House of Represenatives Member representing Ifo/Ewekoro Constituency - Hon. Kunle Adeyemi and his supporters.
Other Party chieftains who were caught up in the melee were Senator Akin Odunsi, representing Ogun West and members of the House of Representatives, including Olumide Osoba (Obafemi/Owode), Segun Williams (Abeokuta South), Ibrahim Ogunola (Sagamu); and Remi Bakare, a former governorship aspirant.
Journalists were not spared as Secretary of the Ogun State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) - Soji Amosu; Dimeji Kayode Adedeji (Premium Times); Sheriff Balogun (Thisday); Daud Olatunji (Vanguard); and Segun Olatunji (Punch); were caught up in the show of shame.
Obadara pointed accusing fingers at the State Governor - Senator Ibikunle Amosun as being behind the incident - a claim which has been denied by the latter through his Special Assistant (Media) - Olusola Balogun.
Amosun said: “The news of the alleged attack was shocking to me. All the leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as well as Chairmen of our local councils were in Lagos to celebrate Baba Bisi Akande. It is even more curious that some chieftains of our party would choose a time to honour our revered leader for another meeting. The motive is certainly questionable.”
He added that the “alleged thuggery has all the trappings of a stage-managed event, with the aim of attempting to take over the machinery of our great party through subterfuge. But we will not be taken in by such blackmail.”
The State's Police Public Relations Officer - Muyiwa Adejobi said five Police Officers including the Ewekoro Divisional Police Officer (DPO) were injured in the incident.
Last week, the Party Secretariat in Abeokuta, the State capital, was attacked by a group of thugs believed to be loyal to Amosun. The thugs had disrupted a meeting of the Harmonisation Committee of the APC which was meeting to choose the State's Interim Executive Committee of the Party.
At the heart of the current crisis, aside from the control of the Party machinery, is also the battle for the Party's elective offices in the forthcoming 2015 elections including the Governorship seat.
In the race for the Party's yet-to-be conducted selection process for the Governorship ticket, there is some degree of uncertainty as to whether the incumbent Governor - Amosun will secure the ticket.
The cracks in the defunct Action Congress Nigeria (ACN) - one of the political parties that metamorphosed into the APC, had started to appear since Amosun was imposed on the Party and given the governorship ticket shortly before the elections in 2011 when Amosun and his group moved over from the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP). Leading the imposition of Amosun as the ACN's choice over a list of other governorship aspirants, some of who had been 'waiting' for years, were Party Leaders - Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and less enthusiastic Aremo Segun Osoba - a former Governor of the State.
The forming of the Amosun government widened the gulf within the Party as both the Amosun and Osoba groups wanted the upper hand in the making of government appointments and in the Party structure. The trend has continued over the years and has culminated in the current battle ahead of the 2015 elections.