An ardent supporter of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Agunbiade Bukola, was shot by gunmen this weekend during its campaign rally at Ilase in Obokun Local Government Area of Osun State. The victim, we gathered, is currently on a danger list at the Wesley Guild Hospital, Ilesa.
Daily Sun also gathered that the attack was reportedly carried out by members of the opposition party, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), when APC organized a campaign rally in Ilase and Ibokun towns to be attended by Governor Rauf Aregbesola.
An eyewitness account also revealed that Aregbesola and his entourage had gone to pay homage to the Ilase monarch when the crisis started, adding that several APC members were also injured, while posters of contestants, APC flags and the podium on which the governor was to address the gathering were also damaged.
Addressing a press conference in the aftermath of the crisis on Sunday, APC leader in Obokun/Oriade Federal Constituency, Mrs Dupe-Ajayi Gbadebo told journalists that the attack was carried out on the order of the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party for Osun East Senatorial seat, Prince Francis Fadahunsi.
The APC chieftain, however, disclosed that members of the party (APC) had been able to identify the attackers and gave their names as Oguntade Blessing, Semiu Lamidi, Abiodun Fayawo and one Kazeem.
Mrs Gbadebo also said that during the attack, hoodlums reportedly shot into the air sporadically to scare the waiting APC crowd before freely destroying the flags, posters and the campaign podium.
In the melee, she added, people had to scamper to safety as the PDP thugs had a field day unleashing mayhem on innocent people.
According to her, the APC had petitioned the Commissioner of Police, Abubakar Morafa. The petitioned signed by its lawyer, Barrister Abdul Rasaq Adeoye, urged the police to investigate the matter.
She added: “We had set up our beautifully decorated podium for the campaign and we had moved to the streets to welcome the governor, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, when the PDP thugs stormed the venue, shot our members and disrupted the event. The thugs were sponsored by Prince Francis Fadahunsi who wants to be a senator by all means.”: “Prince Fadahunsi had earlier issued an ultimatum to our people that anybody that would not vote for him must vacate this town. We need protection and that is why we are calling on the police and other security agencies to do their job,” she added.
However, Prince Fadahunsi has debunked the allegation and accused APC thugs of using the covering of the governor to unleash violence on PDP members in the area.
Fadahunsi who spoke through his campaign organization spokesman, Mr. Sola Olowoye, insisted that he did not sponsor the attack on APC members. He added that the APC was rather seeking to cause trouble in the town because they are aware that their party is not popular in the area.