By Dapo Akinrefon & Rotimi Ojomoyela
LAGOS—GOVERNOR Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, yesterday, accused the governorship candidate of All Progressives Congress, APC, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, of plans to implicate him and some leaders of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, with assassinations in the state.
He also declared that the PDP has suspended its campaigns for 72 hours in honour of a former House of Representatives member, Mr. Opeyemi Bamidele, who was shot by a mobile policeman last Friday.
However, in a swift reaction, Dr. Fayemi dismissed the governor’s allegations as aimless and baseless.
Fayose, who addressed newsmen in Lagos, alleged that a meeting was held in Isan-Ekiti, hometown of Dr. Fayemi, the flag bearer of the APC in the July 14, 2018 governorship election where a certain thug popularly known as Agbara was assigned with the task of carrying out the sinister plot of killing people and dumping their corpses in houses belonging to PDP chieftains as well as Fajuyi Park.
His words: “In the last three weeks, violence has returned to the state. First, is because of the election and second is because of the activities of the APC in Ekiti State. You will equally recall APC’s primary that was greeted by violence which caused the party to conduct another primary.
“Our primary in PDP was free and fair. Our campaign has not recorded any incident, there has not been any casualty or harassment. The party has been conducting itself in a very orderly manner because the governor wants it to be so.
“The recent shooting that affected the former member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Opeyemi Bamidele, is sad, unfortunate, regrettable and avoidable.
“I want to say that the claim by the Police and the APC that the policeman came on illegal duty are make-believe.
“I have a report which negates what the APC is saying that Bamidele is in a critical condition and still needs several operations.
“I have advised the family to take appropriate steps to evacuate him from that hospital and take him abroad. His life must not be used to achieve political gains.
“The reason I called this briefing is to inform you that there was a meeting at Dr Fayemi’s hometown in Isan on Saturday night where one man, whose name we will give to the public very soon after our investigations, is known as Agbara. He is being financed and empowered to look for anybody in Ekiti and have them killed and dump their bodies around Fajuyi Park or in front of Government House or in front of the houses of PDP leaders during this week and link it to us as masterminds. It has been impossible for them to link me with violence and to taint our records and campaigns. The man was mobilised in Isan on Saturday night and I felt it was good for the public to know.
“Our party, in solidarity, with the citizens of Ekiti affected by that violence, has suspended public campaigns for the next 72 hours because they are first Ekiti citizens before they are members of political parties.
“So, we are suspending our campaigns for the next 72 hours in sobriety and in respect to the violence that greeted the APC campaign. We also want to appeal to Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State to avoid things that could cause problems in Ekiti, in his attempt to support Dr. Fayemi, to which I have no objection.”
Reacting to Fayose’s claim, the APC candidate, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, described the allegations as aimless and baseless.
Fayemi, who spoke through his Media Adviser, Mr. Yinka Oyebode, said: “Everybody knows his antecedents as a violent man and we also believe strongly he has a hand in the assassination attempt of last Friday. So, he is trying to be defensive, he is just trying to play a defensive game. He is capable of perpetuating violence and pushing it at the threshold of the opposition. If you check his various comments and reactions to the unfortunate incident of last Friday, he knows accusing fingers are being pointed at his direction; and so, he is trying to cause a distraction, that is why he is coming up these aimless and baseless allegations.
“If you have been following his comments, you will have a feeling and an understanding that he actually knew ahead of the shooting. So, he is the mastermind of the whole thing. His conscience is pricking him and that is why he running from pillar to post.”
Bamidele moved to Lagos for treatments
Meanwhile, the injured Bamidele has been moved to Lagos for medical treatments.
A statement by his Media Aide, Ahmed Salami, on Sunday, Bamidele was flown to Lagos by a helicopter with registration number 5N-BSW belonging to Flying Doctors Nigeria, which landed at about 3.05pm at Christ’s School, Ado Ekiti.
Salami said: “We want to assure our teeming supporters to discountenance the misinformation by rumour peddlers that his health had relapsed, saying he was in a stable condition and people were already having unfettered access to him at EKSUTH before he left for Lagos. Let me put on record that his being taken to Lagos was caused by gross dearth of equipment and personnel at EKSUTH.”