THE Oyo State Police Command yesterday vowed to ensure that the killers of Temitope Olatoye during the Saturday’s polls are arrested and made to face the law.
To effect, the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Shina Olukolu, has directed the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of the state Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (CID) to personally lead the team of investigators to unravel the killers.
Olatoye (a.k.a. Sugar), before his demise, was a member of the Federal House of Representatives representing Lagelu / Akinyele Federal Constituency and the Chairman, House Committee on Urban Development and Regional Planning. He was 47 years.
Olatoye was an active member of the Action Democratic Party (ADP). He was allegedly shot by political thugs on Saturday during the governorship election.
The police command reported in a statement made available to The Nation that Olatoye was shot in the head by yet to be identified assailants.
The state police commissioner assured the Oyo people that the miscreants, who committed the crime, would be arrested and duly prosecuted.
The statement reads: “The Commissioner of Police wishes to inform members of the public of an unfortunate incident that led to the death of Temitope Olatoye on Saturday March 9, 2019.
“The Commissioner of Police and the heads of other sisters’ security agencies in Oyo State while monitoring the governorship and State House of Assembly elections in Oyo State received a report of an ambush and shooting incident from the Divisional Police Officer, lyana Offa at Lalupon in Lagelu Local Government Area of Oyo State. In the report, he stated that one Temitope Olajide Olatoye (a.k.a ‘Sugar’) aged about 47 years was attacked by unknown assailants, who allegedly shot him on the head.
“He was immediately evacuated to University College Hospital, (UCH), Ibadan for medical attention, but unfortunately, he died later at the Intensive Care Unit, (ICU) while receiving treatment. The Police immediately commenced investigation and obtained firsthand information as to the identity of the suspected killers. The scene of incident was immediately cordoned off while the Commissioner of Police directed the Deputy missioner of Police, CID, lyaganku Ibadan to personally lead the team of investigators.
“Meanwhile, in compliance with the marching orders of the Inspector General of Police, IGP M.A. Adamu to ensure the most immediate arrest of the fleeing culprits, concerted efforts are ongoing to unravel and arrest the suspected killers of the deceased. The Commissioner of Police, however, wishes to seize this opportunity to seek the understanding of the family members who are bereaved and citizenry to assist the police with credible and useful information that would lead to the arrest of the fleeing culprits.”
Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi has, however, condemned the pockets of violence that characterised Saturday’s election, which led to Olatoye’s death.
In a statement by his Special Adviser, Communication and Strategy, Mr. Bolaji Tunji yesterday, the governor said he was saddened by the turn of events, which he said was antithetical to the pervading peace in the state.
He said the desperation and do-or-die disposition that attended the election was uncalled for since the candidates in the governorship and Assembly election were in the race to serve the people and not themselves.
Commiserating with the families of Olatoye and others who reportedly lost their lives in the election, the governor assured the citizens that the perpetrators would be brought to justice irrespective of their political affiliation and status.
The governor warned that the state government would not allow any individual or group to truncate the had-fought peace and security that the state had enjoyed in the last eight years.
Ajimobi said: “I’m greatly saddened by the pockets of violence that attended yesterday’s (Saturday) election; although the circumstances surrounding the violence and loss of lives are still hazy. It is heartrending that Olatoye and others had to die because of election.
“Nobody’s ambition should be worth the blood or life of any citizen. I’m, therefore, appalled that some unscrupulous politicians and their followers have turned this contest into a do-or-die affair, which is alien to democratic norms in saner climes.
“We struggled hard for this democracy, and for it to be entrenched we must eschew every act of bitterness, desperation and foul play during elections. In life, you win some contests and you lose some. If we imbibe this philosophy, we will take every victory and defeat with equal measure of equanimity.
“I have been in regular touch with all the security agencies since yesterday and they have assured me that the situation had been brought under control. May I use this opportunity to implore them to redouble their efforts and ensure the safety of lives and property going forward.”
The governor condoled with the families of Olatoye and others that lost their lives to Saturday’s skirmishes and prayed for the repose of their soul.