BY HENRY UMORU
ABUJA-A Group under the aegis, Okpameri Youths Forum, has raised alarm over threat to the life of former Commissioner of Agriculture and Natural resources, Edo State, Dr. Tunde Lakoju.
The group also called on leaders of Igarra, Akoko Edo Local government headquarters to help nip any such attempt in the bud to ensure that the people continue to live as a corporate entity in the local government area.
In a statement signed by Mr Kenneth Bolaji, Comrade Victor Arogunyo and Kayode Alabi respectively and made available to newsmen yesterday, the youths also called on the Inspector General of Police, Hafiz Ringim, the State Security Service, SSS, to as a matter of urgency swing into action to avoid what they termed ethnic crisis in Akoko Edo Local government Area of Edo State.
The group alleged that assassination plot on Dr Tunde Lakoju in the name of politics by some Igarra Youths will not be tolerated, just as they vowed not to fold their arms and watch their fellow youths humiliate or threaten to kill their brother, adding, ‘’if there is any further moves by anyone, there will be earth quake, we warn the Igarra youths who are behind such evil plan to desist from beating war drum. The peaceful co-existence between the Igarras and the Okpameris over the years should be maintained.’’
According to the statement, ‘’the Okpameri Youths Forum has raised alarm over threat to the life of Dr Tunde Lakoju by some youths in Igarra allegedly loyal to Deacon Domingo Obende, the Edo North Senator- elect under the platform of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN.
Lakoju who is a prominent son from the Okpameri axis in Akoko-Edo local government Area of the state, was a former member in the House of Representatives and a former Commissioner for Agriculture before he voluntarily resigned from the administration of Comrade Adams Oshiomhole”.
‘’The Okpameri youths after five hours meeting called on the Inspector General of police, the State Security Service,SSS and the entire public to be aware and urge the security agent to immediately swing into action to avoid ethnic crisis in the area.
‘’Consequent upon the above, we the Okpameri Youths strongly condemn all the perfected plans aimed at silencing Dr Tunde Lakoju which is all over Igarra. We do not pray for any inter-tribal war in Akoko-Edo. We wish to implore Deacon(Dr)Domingo Obende to kindly call his ‘people’ to order and toe the path of peace.
‘’We therefore resolve as follows to resist any attempt by anybody to terminate the life of Dr Lakoju, kick if Dr Lakoju’s life is threatened be it in Igarra, Benin, Abuja or anywhere in Nigeria or abroad; to react to any attempt to maim, kidnap, assassinate or harass any of Lakoju’s family members, friends, political associates by paid hired-killers and also advise that the rumoured militants and cultists being assembled to carry out the assault on Dr Lakoju be disbanded with immediate effect. Enough is enough! No one has the monopoly of violence as it takes two to tango.’’
It would be recalled that Dr. Lakoju, a former member of the Federal House of Representatives recently resigned as Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources in the Oshiomhole’s administration and also from his party, ACN following some irreconcilable political differences during the party’s primaries where Deacon Obende Domingo, the Senator-elect for Edo North was declared the party’s candidate.
Lakoju later dumped the ACN and returned to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, even as he joined in the suit against the ACN by Senator Yisa Braimoh to challenge the Domingo’s Victory during the Senatorial election in Edo North Senatorial district.