Crisis in Ekiti following arrest, detention of traditional ruler

Posted by News Express | 20 June 2017 | 2,390 times

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•Ekiti State Police Commissioner Abdullahi Chafe.

Ifon Ekiti in Oye local government has been engulfed by crisis following the arrest and detention of the traditional ruler of the community, Oba Lawrence Bamidele Idowu, by the police for alleged impersonation.

In the crisis that trailed the arrest, an 80-year-old man, who was also the Elejoka of Ibalogun, Chief Bello Ojo, died.

Bunmi Fajana, child of the deceased alleged his late father was manhandled by some people suspected to be thugs while rescuing his 14 year-old-son allegedly abducted by the thugs.

But the police spokesman Alberto Adeyemi said the old man slumped and died while in company of others going to inspect property vandalised following confusion that trailed the arrest.

The arrest, said to have been carried out in the early hours of Tuesday, according to sources, was effected by officers of the command’s SARS who reportedly stormed the community and whisked away some people, including the monarch.

The source, however, said he could not ascertain the number of those arrested as at press time, adding that those arrested were being detained at the police headquarters in Ado Ekiti.

The source alleged that the police, who came around 4am in eight pick up vehicles, marked ‘SARS’, allegedly vandalised some of the property at Idowu’s palace before gaining entrance to arrest him.

Confirming the arrest to our correspondent on the telephone on Tuesday, the Police Public Relations Officer Adeyemi, said Idowu was arrested for parading himself as the traditional ruler of the community, an action he said is capable of causing crisis in the community.

He also said Idowu would be charged to court for impersonation.

According to the PPRO, the community already had a traditional ruler recognised by the state government alleging that Idowu came from Ogun state to install himself as another king.

Adeyemi added, “The real Olufon was installed and is recognised by the state government. But he (Idowu) came from Ogun state and installed himself as another Oba against the tradition of the community and law of the country.”

The police spokesman alleged that several efforts by the Commissioner of Police in the state, Abdullahi Chafe, to resolving the chieftaincy crisis in the community had not yielded fruits as Idowu allegedly turned down several invitations to meeting extended to him by the CP.

“The chairman of the Traditional Council in Oye local government reported him (Idowu) to the CP, the commissioner invited him several times to a meeting to have his own side but he refused to show up. And we will not sit back and allow anybody to cause the breach of the law in any part of the state.

“We are going to charge him to court and if he is found guilty, that is seven years imprisonment,” the PPRO declared.

Although Idowu did not pick the several calls put across to his mobile phone, he had, however, denied the allegation that he installed himself as an Oba of the community.

In a recent interview he granted our correspondent, he said he was not based in Ogun State as alleged by the police but that the head of the kingmakers in ruling house, Chief Abraham Akanle, who installed him, was based in Lagos.

Under Omu Ekiti, it was gathered,  Ifon, Ibalogun and Arin Omu are the three quarters that came together to run a confederation system of government.

Akanle, who holds the traditional title Obaisa of the community, had, while installing Idowu as the new Olufon, dismissed the previous exercise as an “exercise in futility,” saying he had the sole right to present Olufon to the people and the government.

The PPRO said one of the suspected thugs had been arrested and normalcy returned to the community. (Daily Trust)

Source: News Express

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