The fallout from the alleged hoodlum attack on the convoy of the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola continues as a faction of the Osun State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the State Police Command are in disagreement over the events which led to the incident.
A statement issued on Monday by the Osun APC faction Publicity Secretary, Abiodun Agboola, accused the current administration of Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of orchestrating the attack on the Minister during a visit to Osogbo.
But the police command in the state said that there was no such attack, as suspected thugs on the convoy of the minister were the ones who fired gunshots into the air without any provocation, or attack from any quarter around the area scaring people away.
According to the APC faction, the Governor had taken an oppressive stance against members of the party who refuse to align with his stance, attacking them with hoodlums while spreading misinformation in order to tarnish their image.
He said “Our attention has been drawn to deliberate and criminal misinformation being spread by Governor Adegboyega Oyetola’s administration to change the narrative on the attack on the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola today in Osogbo.
“We note the deliberate falsehood being peddled by agents of darkness who have consistently been using the state power to terrorise members of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who are not in the same camp with Governor Oyetola for some time now.
“It is callous and unfortunate that the Minister is being harassed with a view to shutting him out of the state with the governorship primaries in view.
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“Aregbesola’s convoy was attacked by some armed political thugs at Orisunmibare, Osogbo while coming from Ilesa around 5:30 pm today.
“According to the report, the gun-wielding political hoodlums waylaid his convoy and started shooting sporadically on sighting the Minister standing on his open roof vehicle and waiving at a mammoth crowd who were hailing and jubilating at seeing their former governor.
“Jubilant residents who were following Aregbesola scampered for safety to escape being hit by stray bullets.
“A team of combined security operatives from the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, Nigeria Immigration Service, and Department of State Security, who were among Aregbesola’s convoy, stepped down from the vehicles and started shooting in a bid to scare away the armed thugs.
“For about twenty minutes, Old Garage Area was thrown into panic as traders and road users ran helter-skelter as a result of resounding gunshots from the thugs and security operatives.
“May we note that the hoodlums were led by Oyetola’s head of political thugs, Asiri Eniba, apparently at the behest of his sponsor.
“Consistently, the Oyetola government had been on the game of attacking members of The Osun Progressives (TOP), which has the backing of the Minister.
“It is unfortunate that the Oyetola government who had always wanted to tarnish the good name of the Minister quickly put up a report, deceiving many that the Minister “invaded” Osogbo and sent it to the unsuspecting media for use.
“Today’s attempt on the Minister’s life is a confirmation that Osun is no longer a safe state,” the statement by the APC read.
However, in a counter-reaction, the Osun State Police Command refuted media reports about the attack by suspected hoodlums on the Minister in Osogbo.
The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP Yemisi Opalola, in a statement on Monday in Osogbo, the state capital, stated that contrary to reports, gunshots were fired into the air by some members of the minister’s escorts which led to a scramble for safety by residents.
“Today, Monday, at about 5.40 pm, the Minister of Interior, Mr Rauf Aregbesola was moving in a convoy of personnel of NSCDC, Correctional Service, Immigration, as well as some unidentified armed people, suspected to be political thugs along Orisumbare/MFS Road, Osogbo.
“Suddenly, some of the security escorts of the minister started shooting sporadically into the air without any provocation nor attack, thereby causing members of the public to scramble for their safety.
“Thirteen empty shells of G-3, assault, and AK-37 rifle were recovered along the road after the minister’s departure.
“No casualty, however, was recorded”, the PPRO pointed out.
Nonetheless, she confirmed that an investigation has commenced unraveling the series of events that culminated in the incident.
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