BY OLA AJAYI
IBADAN— MORE revelations emerged yesterday at the five-man panel of enquiry investigating the violent clashes between factions of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW, in Oyo State as a witness alleged that a factional leader of the union, Alhaji Lamidi Mukaila rented the equipment the past administration attempted to use to demolish the secretariat of the union in Olomi area of Ibadan.
It will be recalled that the immediate past administration along with the police attempted to demolish the secretariat of the union but met with stiff resistance from the loyalists of Alhaji Lateef Akinsola aka Tokyo who had variously accused the ex-Commissioner of Police in the state, Alhaji Baba Adisa Bolanta and the then Governor, Otunba Adebayo Alao-Akala of backing the other faction. The resistance led to the death of three men including the driver of the demolition equipment brought to the office of the union.
A lawyer, Mr. Adetunji Rufai while giving evidence before the panel claimed the company of his client, Coastal Secured Ventures,(Nig) Ltd was contacted by Mukaila for the hiring of the equipment. The witness told the panel that the union leader contracted the company on behalf of the then Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala and his Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, Majekodunmi Aborode for the lease of excavator, Mack tractor and low bed at N600,000 per day.
He said it was after the contract had been invoices with No. 0041 that they realized that the trucks were “diverted by the then government, to Olomi area where the government purportedly tried to use the same to demolish the state secretariat of the NURTW controlled by Tokyo faction of the union. In the process, our client’s equipment was set ablaze and the driver in person of Yisau Mohammed was brutally murdered”.
He pleaded with the panel to ensure a replacement of the burnt equipment which he said cost N154 million in addition to N600, 000 per day.
Also, he prayed that the sum of N60 million be paid for the loss of business opportunity and compensation for the company’s driver, Yisau Mohammed who was murdered.