Olateju Ishola, Personal Assistant to the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, says he was attacked by a gang of hoodlums allegedly loyal to Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of Osun state while attending a function in Osogbo.
Ishola, in a statement, alleged that the hoodlums attacked him on Sunday, March 28, 2021, and attempted to kill him at a birthday party organised by a member of the State House of Assembly, Taofeek Badmus.
He denied objecting to a musician’s song praising Governor Oyetola during the party.
He added that the stories making the round since the incident happened were a complete falsehood to cover the tracks of those who hatched the nefarious act.
The minister’s aide explained that the attack was an attempted assassination on his life and called on security agencies to investigate the incident.
The statement read, “The first feelings of danger came when my Personal Assistant came to whisper into my ears that I was not safe in the place and that we should find our ways out. My response was instant; I used style to dance out of the stage and got out to the spacious premises. A few minutes later, I stepped out to discuss with an aide of the Speaker, Osun State House of Assembly, Joseph Akanbi.
“We were right outside with a woman, a quantity surveyor. Then, I saw a bus that parked at a close distance. There were two mobile policemen on the bus. There and then, I sensed trouble. So, I excused the people I was discussing with. I smelt danger, but I thought I was not the target.
“I went back inside the restaurant to inform Aresa of what I saw outside. I was backing the entrance. Suddenly, one of the guys who alighted from the parked bus rushed at me and started shouting: Ohun niyen, this is Teju and so on. Then the blows, the cuts, the bruises, and all the rest began, and so it continued.
“Alhaji Simple, an elder brother to Senator Ajibola Basiru, was also on hand. He said, ‘What is wrong with you guys? Are you out of your senses?’ I think he might have known one or two of the thugs that attacked me. The assailants responded by attacking him with a sharp object. That was how he sustained injuries. Hon. Taofeek Badmus was also attacked. He was punched and harassed. He later hid under the table of a man selling suya at the place.
“Also, Honourable BFK was harassed by the thugs when he attempted to rescue my friend, Wale Omolola. I managed to escape from the restaurant and was running towards Jerry Paul filling station. The hoodlums were running after me. They shot at me several times. They were shouting, don’t kill him here, let us catch him and take him to another place.
“I heard my PA, Dare, screaming. I thought he had been severely injured. I had to navigate my way back to the restaurant to rescue him because I felt I had diverted the attention of the thugs. Unfortunately, I ran into their midst. They held me and started unleashing machete cuts on me. Luckily for me, a bouncer at the restaurant punched two of the hoodlums holding me and some of them went for him. That was how I was able to escape from them.
“The guy who led the attack is a notorious hoodlum. He and his gang members have been enjoying protection in the state.
“A few minutes later, I came back to the scene in search of my PA and phones. I saw the ring leader of the thugs, a known person to me, too. He turned back immediately he saw me. It was during that time that Hon. Taofeek Badmus called one of the people around and asked him to tell me to come to UNIOSUN Teaching Hospital. I insisted I won’t go. I thought he was also there for treatment.
“Let me state here that it is unfortunate and an act of cowardice for Hon. Badmus to have denied there was an attack on him, a move to underplay the assassination attempt on me.”
Recall that former Governor Aregbesola has had a cold war with Oyetola, his successor.
Oyetola, who served as Chief of Staff to Aregbesola, has quietly complained about Osun state finances that he inherited.
The governor has reversed many of such actions, notably the single school uniform, reclassification of the public school system and the abolition of single-sex schools, which Aregbesola introduced in 2013.