The Osun State Governor, Ademola Adeleke has explained why he left the central Eid ground in Osogbo on Wednesday.
According to the state government, some armed thugs sponsored by former Senate spokesperson, Ajibola Basiru attempted to harm the state Governor, Adeleke.
The governor’s spokesperson, Olawale Rasheed made this known in a statement on Wednesday.
Recall that Governor Adeleke abruptly left the venue of the Eid, upset over a chaotic seating arrangement that prevented him from participating in the two raka’at rite.
Explaining what transpired, the Governor’s spokesperson said there was an attempt on the Governor’s life but his security team and God saved him from the attack.
He added that security information had it that the thugs were imported to eliminate the Governor and key government functionaries.
According to him, Senator Bashiru played a prominent role in the chaos that ensued.
“My good people of Osun, I appeal for calm and urge us to continue to celebrate the Sallah festival in peace. I am safe by the special grace of God.
“I have directed security agencies to arrest those behind the incident and get them to face the wrath of the law. The Commissioner of Police has been directed to arrest those involved no matter how highly placed.”
The statement further explained that the“Governor arrived at the venue hoping to observe the Eid prayers was practically surrounded by armed thugs, prompting security men to ferry the Governor into his jeep.
“For the second time, the Governor attempted to enter the praying field but the encirclement by armed thugs was already visible. It was at that point that the Governor had to leave the praying ground.
“Members of the public will recall an earlier security alert on an evil plot to destabilize the peace and stability of Osun state.
“The government particularly notes with shock and surprise the role played by former Senator Ajibola Bashiru who took over the space reserved for the Governor at the prayer ground. All efforts to get the former Senator to vacate the space proved abortive.
“PDP members who agitated for respect for the office of the Governor were beaten up. It was a scene of chaos by the time the Governor arrived for the prayer.
“The government was even more shocked that thugs armed to the teeth were spotted all over the praying ground with the security information that they were imported to eliminate the Governor and key government functionaries,” the statement alleged.
Reacting to the allegations in a telephone interview, Senator Ajibola Basiru denied the claims made by the Governor’s spokesperson, adding that anybody who blames him for complicity in what transpired needs a psychiatric evaluation.
In his own view, it was thugs of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) led by Muniru Raji that assaulted him at the praying ground.
Senator Basiru said the thugs removed his turban and tried to take him away but the worshippers stood against them.
He said, “If anybody says that Ajibola Basiru attempt to assassinate the governor of Osun state, the person needs psychiatric examination. I never saw the governor today and I’m not sure the governor set his eyes on me today. But today, I was assaulted by thugs of PDP led by Muniru Raji at the praying ground where I was sitting to pray.
“I did not see any protocols but yet, Muniru Raji brought thugs that I should stand up from where I wanted to pray and I prayed at the same spot. I did not see the governor. I did not know whether he come or he did not come. I did not fight anybody. The thugs removed my turban. They tried to take me away but the worshippers stood against them. If they say somebody wants to assassinate the governor, that means something is wrong with that governor if he allows such a statement to be issued on his behalf.
“I was invited by the police and the matter was resolved amicably. We told them that it was the overzealous supporters of the governor who fomented trouble.
“There is an established position as to where Muslim leaders should sit and that is where I sat. I did not see any protocol from the governor. I did not set my eyes on the governor. I did not know he was coming to the Eid. The person that issued the statement needs a psychiatric examination. The governor should sack the person that pushed that story out.”