After failed assassination bid, Osun Police arrest, release, re-arrest Layi Oyeduntan

A few minutes past eight o’clock on the night of Saturday October 18, 2008, gunshots were fired sporadically into Alhaji Layi Oyeduntan’s residence at the Oroki Housing Estate behind the residence of Senator Simeon Oduoye by initially unknown gunmen.

In the panic that followed the shooting, Oyeduntan made several save-our-soul calls to his friends and neighbours. One of such calls was made to Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola alerting him of the invasion of his residence by unknown gunmen. At this time, Oyeduntan did not know that he was seeking help from the man who ordered his arrest in the first place.

These calls led many of the neighbours to gather and decide on what could be done to rescue him.

Apparently realising that they have been discovered, the gunmen who were later found to be policemen gained entrance and took Oyeduntan into custody for what was said to be in connection with the June 14, 2007 Abere Explosion saga.

The armed policemen believed to have been drawn from the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) led by controversial DSP Ayuba Adekunle shot and killed Oyeduntan’s Alsatian dog.

We are left with no choice than to conclude that were it not for the courage and vigilance of Oyeduntan’s neighbours who raced to the scene of the incidence, the gunmen had a clear motive of killing the AC chieftain.

This would have led to another massive clampdown on the opposition who would have been blamed for the dastardly act.

We want to place it on record that top officials of the Osun State Government and the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have recently subjected Oyeduntan to intense pressure for him to abandon our great party and defect to the PDP.

He was promised several perquisites and benefits if he acceded to their demands for him to join PDP or face dire consequences. A particular PDP chieftain whose names we are keeping secret for now even mocked Oyeduntan for lacking necessary funds to complete his Osogbo Country home pledging that if he crossed over to the PDP, he would be made comfortable and affluent.

All these entreaties for Oyeduntan to abandon AC and join the PDP have gone unheeded; a situation that has made him to draw the ire of Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola’s administration and ruling party.

The plan appeared to have been hatched in the direction of eliminating Oyeduntan but it is logical to conclude that when DSP Ayuba Adekunle’s team found this task as impossible, the fiercely loyal and bold guard dog was shot and killed.

While neighbours gathered to behold the gory spectacle, the former Commissioner for Health and Water Resources was cleverly taken into custody and detained for what police sources linked with the well-beaten Abere Explosion saga.

We have advised the Osun State Police Command several times in the past that it should be wary of its association with the ruling party and Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola so as not to soil its garment of neutrality and professionalism.

Police investigations have been conducted. Among the discoveries made by the inquiry were the telephone lines of the suspects. Simple logic demands that the call logs of the telephone lines of the suspects were adequate to reveal the identities of those directly or remotely connected with the explosion.

Rather than follow the dictates of professional policing, the Osun State Police Command appeared to have been helping the ruling PDP to suppress the opposition by hounding all notable chieftains of the Action Congress (AC) and other political parties into detention and silence. Some have been forced to go underground since the clamp down began. The entire Osun State executive council of the AC has been crippled by DSP Ayuba Adekunle forcing them to go out of reach while those who have not been arrested are only waiting to be picked up at any time.

The wave of arrests have moved from the State AC executive members to legislators of the State House of Assembly including the Minority Leader, Hon. Timothy Owoeye who was arrested by DSP Ayuba Adekunle for Abere expolsion after signing a petition to the EFCC on the fraudulent Constituency Project now being investigated. Other top flight leaders of the opposition have not been spared. Those who have not been linked with the Abere Explosion Saga have been branded “Troublemakers” by Governor Oyinlola in his recent letter to the Director-General of the State Security Service (SSS).

We are now forced to think that the intentions of DSP Ayuba Adekunle and his sponsors in the Government House are to ensure that the opposition is destabilised and rattled into silence so as to discourage further expositions of corrupt and criminal activities of the Oyinlola administration that has become a negative reference point in official sleaze.

We demand the immediate unconditionally release of Oyeduntan from untenable detention . Membership of the ruling party should not be secured by the use of brute force and bestial crudity as it is being done now in Osun State. The basis of the 1999 Constitution is being threatened by Oyinlola and his co-travellers in the bus of the unattainable one-party Hobbessian state of nature.

We also call on the Inspector-General of Police, Sir Mike Okiro to probe the activities of DSP Ayuba Adekunle and his unholy romance with the ruling PDP before the public image of the force under him is shattered to irretrievable smithereens.

By Gbenga Fayemiwo
Media Assistant to the Gubernatorial Candidate of Action Congress in Osun State, Engineer Rauf Aregbesola

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