A mild drama ensued in Akure, the Ondo state capital
yesterday, as a protest planned by a group, aegis Ondo Liberation Initiative,
on the continued absence of governor Rotimi Akeredolu from the state, was
prevented from holding by over 200 commercial motorcycle operators.
The venue of the protest/ press conference, which was the
state Council of the NUJ, was invaded by commercial motorcycle operators as
early as 8am.
They motorcyclists took over the venue and prevented the
members of the group that had early paid for the hall.
For hours, both group members laid claim to the use of the
Spokesperson for the group, Alabi Johnson, who later
addressed the group members at the entrance of the NUJ secretariat, expressed
concern about the state of health of the governor.
Johnson said that the group perceived that the governor ”
has been caged by either his immediate family or his aides who are his handlers
and prevented him from accessing quality health care abroad because of reasons
best known to them.
” We call on all well-meaning Nigerians to shout out loud,
intervene and rescue him from this perceived captivity. Aketi shouldn’t be
allowed to die the way he’s being caged.
” The concept we are here to showcase today is “Jara e gba”
which translates to “Rescue yourself”. It is now evidently clear that every
citizen of this state needs to Rescue him/herself from poverty, impoverishment,
economic hardship and political hardship.
” As a matter of fact today we wish to canvass for the
rescue of our Governor from the handlers who have deliberately caged him so as
to remain in one position for their selfish interest at the expense of his ill
health. (Aketi Jara e gba!)
“We all know that when anyone is sick as our Governor is
now, he/she remains at the mercy of whoever is managing his/her health. As it
is now, we perceive that our Governor is very ill and at the mercy of these
” Nobody has access to him! Nobody has seen him in any
public place since his claimed resumption of office. This is why our concept of
Jare e gba becomes necessary in Ondo.
” Ondo government needs to be rescued; the people need to be
rescued by embracing Government policies that can eradicate poverty. Aketi
needs to be rescued and taken out for better medical care. The Governor is no
longer a private person but a public officer.
“We want to use this medium to call on the President of the
Federal Republic of Nigeria, H. E. Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR, to intervene in
rescuing Aketi and take him abroad for good medical care.
They commended the party’s leadership for their timely
intervention and restoration of peace in the state.
Johnson also lauded the embattled deputy governor, Hon Lucky
“for his maturity, humility and perseverance in handling the
” We urge him to ensure the reconciliation and the political
solution opted for is successful.
“We recognise the office of the Speaker of the Ondo House of
Assembly and urge that the reconciliation process is given due priority.
Meanwhile, the embattled deputy governor, Hon Lucky
Aiyedatiwa, has denied endorsing any planned protest against the governor’s
continued absence from the state.
Aiyedatiwa in a statement he personally signed in Akure,
disowned the protesters.
Aiyedatiwa said that “My attention has been drawn to some
false publications in which it was alleged that a group loyal to me is planning
to hold a protest against the Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi
“This is to inform the good and peace-loving people of Ondo
State that I am not aware of any such protest and no group or association has
my endorsement to carry out public demonstration of any kind.
“I affirm my commitment to the ongoing reconciliation
efforts of the National leadership of our party, the All Progressives Congress
(APC) on the political situation in our State which are already yielding the
much-needed tranquillity in the State.
“Therefore, I enjoin the security operatives in the State to
continue to maintain peace and ensure that the good people of Ondo State go
about their daily activities without any disturbance.
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