By Dapo Akinrefon
NATIONAL Coordinator of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC), Otunba Gani Adams has dissociated his group over an alleged murder of one Mr Igbekele Oyeleye also known as Sparco in Arigidi-Akoko North West local government area of Ondo State.
He also berated the Ondo State police Command over the treatment meted out at the Zaki of Arigidi-Akoko, Oba Yisa Olanipekun, who was detained for several hours over the incident.
Addressing newsmen in Lagos, Otunba Adams who explained the circumstances that led to the death of Oyeleye, however, frowned at attempts by police authorities in the Ondo State to rubbish his name by planning to declare him wanted.
The OPC leader, who dismissed claims made by a national newspaper (not Vanguard) for his alleged role in the incident explained that contrary to claims made by police authorities that suspected OPC members were responsible for the death of Oyeleye, the allegation had a political undertone.
He argued further that some people were blowing the matter out of proportion, just as he argued that Arigidi-Akoko was not the only town faced with chieftaincy crises.
According to himâ€œthis issue is about a tussle over chieftaincy title in Arigidi-Akoko, there were two people jostling to become the Zaki. I supported the current Zaki, that is Oba Yisa Olanipekun who I believe is more popular and accepted by everyone in the community of Arigidi-Akoko. Since the installation of the Oba, there have been one crisis or the other.â€
Continuing, he explained, â€œI was in the palace of the Oba when we heard that Sparco was being attacked and that he had a cut on his eye.
I quickly raced to the scene and took Sparco to Abimbola hospital where I asked that he should be treated. It was later I learnt that he was forcefully taken away from the hospital to an unknown destination by some persons where he died. Sparco is a member of the OPC, why should I or any member of the OPC want him dead?
Frowning at the way and manner the Ondo monarch was unlawfully detained in police custody, Adams called on the Inspector-General of Police, Mr Ogbonna Onovo to redeploy the Ondo State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Donald Iroham, whom he accused of trying to portray in a bad light.
While absolving himself and the monarch over the alleged murder, he frowned at the manner at which â€œthe Zaki, Oba Olanipekun was detained by the police for nine hours. It took the intervention of the Ondo State Deputy Governor, who called the Commissioner of Police to release the Oba. It is rather unfortunate.â€
Otunba Gani Adams and the Zaki of Arigidi-Akoko, Oba Yisa Olanipekun were to be declared wanted by police authorities over the attack on Igbekele Oyeleye, known as Sparco, who died at the Federal Medical Centre, Owo, after a fracas.
Oyeleye was allegedly abducted by people suspected to be members of the OPC in his home in Arigidi-Akoko, Akoko North-West Local Government Area of the state, last Sunday.