One killed, many injured as Ekiti Ward Congresses turn bloody
Posted by News Express | 1 August 2021 | 56 times
• APC supporters and flag
The operatives of Ekiti State Police Command on Saturday confirmed that one person lost his life during the ward congresses of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state.
There was a sharp disagreement between the leadership of the party and some stakeholders about the modality to be adopted for the congresses. While the APC leadership was rooting for consensus arrangement, others, like members of the South West Agenda for 2023 (SWAGA) insisted on an open election.
It was gathered that the tragic incident occurred at the Pavilion venue of the ward 10 congress close to the popular Fajuyi Park
Also in Ado-Ekiti ward 8, thugs’ unleashed mayhem on party members and disrupted the process. Many of the injured members are receiving medical attention in one of the private hospitals in the state capital.
Also in Ado-Ekiti, there was violence in Ward 4 and 8 as thugs went on a rampage to disrupt the voting process.
The Police Public Relation Officer, (PPRO) Sunday Abutu who confirmed the news to journalists in Ado-Ekiti said the deceased simply identified as ‘ Jide” met his untimely death when he was attacked with charms by a yet-to-be-identified suspect.
The Police Image maker explained that the unfortunate incident occurred after members of the party were celebrating victory.
“We got a distress call today (Saturday) after the Ward 10 congress in Fajuyi that people were fighting when celebrating and on getting to the place, we were told one person has been rushed to the hospital where he was confirmed dead. From our findings, he was beaten with a charm and investigations have commenced towards arresting the perpetrators,” Abutu said.
A stakeholder in Ward 10 and chairperson, Ado local government, Mrs Omotunde Fajuyi expressed sadness over the turn of events.
She claimed that the election process at Ward 10 was conducted in a peaceful atmosphere and devoid of violence.
“As you are aware today, Ward 10 congress was peaceful during the congress and we had only one person who contested forward chairmanship position, and was elected unopposed. The process went peacefully and nobody had any cause to fight but we were told some persons had disagreement later after we left the place and one of them is dead. As I speak with you now, I am going to the hospital,” she said.
A Ward Chairmanship aspirant in Oye two, Awe St Matthew also expressed frustration about the process.
He said members of the APC arrived at the venue as early as 9 am to participate in the election and waited till evening without ser9ng any State official or panel member.
Awe alleged plot by certain powers that be to foist some people on them.
In his reaction the state chairman of SWAGA, Senator Tony Adeniyi decried the widespread violence which marred the process, saying that there was no congress in the state.
According to him, ”there was no election today in Ekiti because there was no accreditation across the wards. The Fayemi Tokan Tokan people manipulated the process and prevent people from voting for their preferred leaders, especially SWAGA members.
” I can confirm to you that there was violence in Ikere-Ekiti, virtually all the wards in Ado-Ekiti we had violence and several people wounded and also in Ward 10, someone was killed. Is that how to do a congress? ”
However, the party spokesman, Ade Ajayi denied the allegations by the leaders on the process of the congress, saying every member of the were allowed to participate in the congress.
”I can tell you that nobody was deprived from the congress today (Saturday) and it is our hope that it will be an acceptable one by the stakeholders. It is blatant lie to say that people were deprived, people participated in the process,” he said.
Earlier, the Ward Congress Committee Chairman Alhaji Shittu Galambi has said that the party would encourage consensus arrangements as many as possible and also give those willing to go for the ballot to do so.
The seven-man panel has Hon. Omowunmi Olatunji , Hon. Mohammed Bamanga, Hon. Mohammed Ndanusa, Hon. Naomi Awake, Prof. Okey Onyejekwe and Comr. Bello Osaretin, as members.
Addressing journalists at the APC’s Secretariat, in Ado Ekiti, after distributing election materials to all the 177 wards, the Committee’s Chairman, Alhaji Shittu Galambi, said he conveyed the message of Governor Buni to all stakeholders that consensus should be adopted in party’s interest.
Galambi, however, clarified that the party and stakeholders are at liberty to conduct a direct mode of the election where consensual agreement fails among contenders.
“We have distributed materials across all the 177 wards and we got the full support of all relevant stakeholders. The process has been crisis-free.
“Most importantly, we communicated the message of our National Caretaker and Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee that they should adopt consensus and where that fails, there will be a direct mode of primary.
“Let me also say that we have not received any complaint from any of the stakeholders. Allowing peace and unity is in our party’s interest as loyal members,” Galambi said.
Meanwhile, a member of the State Working Committee, who craved anonymity told journalists, on Saturday, that the party had adopted consensus majorly before the arrival of the Committee from the national.
He stated that virtually all the members across 177 wards adopted consensus with less than 10 advocating for elections, which he said was being sorted out to allow for consensual arrangement.
“We are having less stress here in Ekiti because we adopted consensus and it is paying off. There were less than 10 wards that could not reach consensus but the leaders in those areas are engaging in serious horse trading and I believe that will be of help. Majorly, we are not having a serious problem here in Ekiti and the process has been hitch-free”, he said.
On his part, a chieftain of the party and governorship aspirant, Chief Reuben Famuyibo lamented that the politicians failed democracy in the state with the level of violence which characterised the ward congress.
Famuyibo, an elder statesman explained that he would address the press in the coming days on the process said;”as predicted by me on Friday, there was no election today, what you see are thugs moving around the wards.
”The blood of any citizens does not worth my ambition. When I got to the ward today, I returned home, this is not democracy and our politicians have not learnt any election and it is unfortunate. We await what the national secretariat will do it.”
Courtesy (excluding headline) Daily Independent
Source: News Express
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