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Murder of youth leader sparks off protest in Ondo

By Dayo Johnson
THE death of a Youth leader in Arigidi-Akoko in Akoko Northwest local government area of Ondo State, Mr. Igbekele Oyeleye weekend sparked off protest which disrupted peace in the town for hours.

Hundreds of youths, women and children took to the street with placards to protest the death of the leader popularly known as Sparco.

Oyeleye was said to have been allegedly attacked by suspected members of the Odua Peoples Congress (OPC).

Police authorities in the state have swung into action by commencing investigation into the alleged murder.

The State Police Commissioner, Mr. Donald Iroham confirmed this weekend in a bid to pacify the warring youths and stem the protest from escalating into a battle between them and the suspected killers.

Vanguard learnt in Akure that the deceased was last week abducted and taken to an unknown place allegedly on the order of a leader of OPC, following his refusal to perform the annual rituals at the Otota festival.

The deceased was said to have been beaten to a state of come with dangerous weapon thereby sustaining head injuries and the loss of blood.

In a swift reaction the OPC denied the allegation and said it was not responsible for the death of Oyeleye.

The OPC pointed out weekend that the deceased was involved in physical fight with another person and not its member.

The leader of OPC, Gani Adams said Oyeleye was”not qualified to perform rituals at the Otota festival because the rituals were always performed by the oldest man in the community.

Adams said the allegation against the OPC was a blatant lie, as the deceased was a member of the group and could not have been attacked by the same group.

“The allegation is a great lie. I was attending a meeting at the palace on the anniversary of the Oba when we heard there was fighting involving “sparco” and as the Otunba of the town, I took him to the hospital.

“I paid the hospital bill, but I was later called that some people have forcefully taken him away from the hospital to FMC, so how could anybody have accused me of causing his death”.

Vanguard gathered that after his attack he was said to have been rushed to a private hospital in Ikare-Akoko by his attackers from where he was transferred to the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Owo for medical attention.

His condition was said to have gotten worse following which he was to be transferred to the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital (OAUTH) before he gave up the ghost.

The death of the youth leader however led to tension and apprehension in Arigidi-Akoko, as the youth of the town demanded for justice over his death as they marched through the major streets of the town alleging that he was killed over the chieftaincy tussle rocking the town.

Speaking with newsmen the Secretary of the Youth, Mr. Tubosun Adebisi said it was unfortunate for a leader of the town to have been involved in such an act, calling on government and the law enforcement agents to get to the roots of the matter.


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