The Osun Progressives (TOP), a caucus of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Osun State has accused the IleriOluwa group and the Special Adviser on Education, Jamiu Babatunde Olawumi of masterminding the attack on members of the party at the Oranmiyan House in Osogbo on Thursday.
Republican Nigeria reported yesterday that armed hoodlums had attacked the venue of the caucus meeting and shot sporadically, a situation which made most members to scamper for safety.
The caucus Chairman, Adelowo Adebiyi, who made this known while addressing journalists shortly after the attack, stated that it goes to confirm the alarm that it raised on Monday and at other times that the governor’s men were out to assassinate its leaders.
Adebiyi, who wondered why the IleriOluwa group which enjoyed the patronage of the state governor was after the lives of fellow party members, called on President Muhammadu Buhari and the leaders of security agencies to step in and call Governor Adegboyega Oyetola and his men to order.
The former Osun APC Chairman also noted that Thursday’s attack on members of the Rasaq Salinsile-led faction of the party in the State had shown the desperation of the governor’s camp.
Recalling how the attack occured, Adebiyi stated that, “The thugs invaded the weekly meeting of TOP around 2:10pm today. I was just addressing the caucus when the thugs started shooting. This led to a stampede as APC members scampered for safety. Luckily for us, there were no major casualties as members ran into the main building for safety. But some of our people were wounded.
“The IleriOluwa group sent thugs to attack us. One Tesleem Raji aka Akerele from Ile Esu, Ikoyi, in Isokan local government of the state led the thugs that attacked us here. That is the same guy that led the attack on us during the state congress.
“Today’s attack is coming three days after we raised an alarm that the IleriOluwa people have concluded plans to eliminate leaders of TOP and other members of our party.”
The TOP chairman who believed that the attack was carried out because of the absence of personnel of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps who were on national assignment to another State, called on the security agencies not to wait for any member to be killed before action will be carried out on their petitions.
He also added that the matter was going to be officially reported to the Commissioner of Police, the AIG Zone XI and the State Commandant of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.
… Aregbesola should disown Adebiyi – Omipidan
Meanwhile, the Chief Press Secretary to the Osun State Governor, Ismail Omipidan has described the TOP Chairman, Adebiyi as a discredited fellow who should not be taken seriously.
Omipidan, who maintained that the state governor is not a violent man, called on former governor Rauf Aregbesola to disown Adebiyi before he rubbishes his office as Interior Minister.
In a press release, he personally signed, Omipidan who requested security agencies in Osun to closely watch the TOP chairman, accused him of planning a sinister move.
While questioning on whose authority TOP members requested the personnel of the NSCDC to provide security cover during its weekly meeting, the governor’s spokesperson revealed that he had intelligence report that Rasaq Salinsile, the APC factional chairman in the State had met with one of those that were alleged to have carried out Thursday’s attack.
The CPS dismissed the attack, noting that TOP was acting out a script already prepared by them.
In the runoff to the Osun gubernatorial election on July 16, 2022, there has been a running battle in the Osun APC which has pitted the IleriOluwa group loyal to the State Governor against The Osun Progressives (TOP) which enjoys the patronage of Rauf Aregbesola, the Minister of Interior and former Governor of the State.
The disagreement has seen parallel APC congresses held in the State, with the birthing of a faction of the party led by Rasaq Salinsile, while Gboyega Famodun leads another faction.
TOP meanwhile has continually maintained that they are not out to divide the party but rather to sanitise it and pacify aggrieved members while pursuing an Osun West agenda for the 2022 election.