The Peoples Democratic Party in Ogun State has said 18 of its members are currently being detained by the operatives of the Federal Special Anti-R
The Peoples Democratic Party in Ogun State has said 18 of its members are currently being detained by the operatives of the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Magbon, Abeokuta.
A factional chairman of the party in the state loyal to Ladi Adebutu, Sikirulahi Ogundele, disclosed this to journalists on Thursday at a press briefing in Abeokuta.
He said the detained party members who are residents of Remo recently defected to the PDP from the ruling All Progressives Congress.
Ogundele, who said the victims had among them a lady and students of the Gateway Polytechnic, Sapade, explained that they had been in detention since Monday, June 4, 2018.
He said they were arrested at the constituency office of the legislator representing Remo North at the state House of Assembly, Adebiyi Adeleye, along Odemo Road, Isara-Remo, where they had gone to break their fast with the legislator.
Ogundele said the lawmaker was equally arrested, detained and was later released on bail about 48 hours later.
He told journalists that efforts made so far to get the other 18 victims released had not yielded any positive results, adding that they might be “suffering the pains of rejection of the APC in the state.”
Ogundele, who was flanked by other party leaders from Remo land, Chief Idowu Ayodabo, and a former state Commissioner for Education, Pa Francis Banwo, among others, explained that if the police had any evidence against them, they should be charged to court immediately.
He said, “This is an embarrassment to the way political leaders had always conducted their affairs in the state.
“It is a dent on the image of the state to have a sitting lawmaker detained for about 48 hours and was later released on bail.
“And for over 72 hours now, 18 other members of the PDP, including a lady and some students of the Gateway Polytechnic, Sapade, are still in detention at the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad cells, Magbon in Abeokuta.
“They were arrested on Monday, June 4, 2018, and up till now (Thursday, 7th) they had yet to be released.
“I have met the state Commissioner of Police over the matter, he directed me to meet the officer-in-charge of SARS at Magbon.
“When I met him, he said they (victims) would be released on Wednesday, June 6, 2018. That never happened. But it was later I started hearing that they were acting on ‘orders from above.’”
Ogundele, therefore, called on President Muhammadu Buhari and the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, to intervene and ensure that the 18 victims were released.
However, when contacted on the telephone over the issue, the Secretary to the State Government, Taiwo Adeoluwa, said the state government had no hand in the detention of the victims.
He said, “As a government, we have no issue with anybody. We are not even aware that anybody is detained anywhere.
“Whether anybody defected yesterday or today, I am not aware.”
When contacted, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Abimbola Oyeyemi, said the 18 suspects were being held for cult-related activities in Ijebu Igbo and Ijebu Ode axis, adding that a complaint was lodged to the police by one of their victims.
He said they might be charged to court today (Friday).
He said, “They are being held for cultism, they are the ones unleashing mayhem on people at Ijebu Igbo and Ijebu Ode axis. They even made an attempt on somebody’s life and the person made a complaint to the police.
“However, they might be charged to court tomorrow (Friday).”