The government of Osun has blamed political opportunists for the attack on one for its officials, Idiat Babalola, on Monday at the funeral rites of late Isiaka Adeleke in Ede.
The spokesperson for the government, Semiu Okanlawon, told PREMIUM TIMES that the attack was an ugly way of honouring the memories of the personality of the late Mr. Adeleke, who was the first civilian governor of Osun State.
Ms. Babalola who was seated amongst some dignitaries, including the Governor of Ogun State, Ibikunle Amosun, at Mr. Adeleke’s burial, was chased out by hoodlums, who accused her of betraying the late senator.
Mr. Adeleke was reported to be nursing a governorship ambition ahead of the election next year, while at the same time, Ms. Babalola was said to have been picked as a running mate to whomever emerges the anointed candidate of the All Progressives Congress.
The protesters major grouse against her, it was gathered, was that she was not supporting Mr. Adeleke’s ambition to return to the government house, despite being an indigene of Ede.
The mob also raised allegations that the government of Aregbesola had a hand in the death of the senator, even though the governor was away in China and there is no evidence yet that the lawmaker was killed.
“Some hoodlums looking for every available thing to hold on to only took advantage of the tension created by the death of Adeleke in the minds of his supporters,” Mr. Okanlawon said.
“What they should have done is to await the outcome of the autopsy, that would guide their actions.”
The result of an autopsy conducted by the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology Teaching Hospital has not been made public.
Mr. Okanlawon said the death of the senator was a collective loss to the people of Osun State and the Ede community.
He said those who took the laws into their hands to launch the attack against Ms. Babalola were hasty and acted based on unverified information.
It was, however, gathered that Ms. Babalola is also a native of Ede, where Mr. Adeleke hails from, and her family and that of the Adekele’s have close ties.
Her father, S.O. Babalola, was also at the funeral while she was being attacked by the irate supporters.
PREMIUM TIMES also learnt that the government team, led by the deputy governor, was on its way to the burial but had to turn back on learning about the attack.
Mr. Okanlawon, however, declined comments when asked if the government would take any action against those involved in the attack.
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