OPC Launches Manhunt For Kidnappers of Olu Falae
Founder of the Oodua People's Congress (OPC), Dr. Frederick Fasehun, has
called for the immediate release of his birthday mate, Chief Olu Falae,
kidnapped on Monday in Akure, Ondo State.
Born on September 21 like Falae, a visibly agitated Fasehun, who turned
Octogenarian yesterday, said in Lagos yesterday that he had ordered OPC
operatives to immediately launch a manhunt, combing all nooks and crannies
of Ondo State and beyond, for the kidnapped politician.
Fasehun described the kidnap as an assault and insult on the Yoruba
people, and challenged security operatives and agencies to produce Falae
within 48 hours.
The OPC Founder immediately summoned all members in the country to attend
an emergency meeting on Sunday.
“OPC is not interested in crisis but it was founded primarily for the
protection of its own and for building bridges in Nigeria,” he said. “All
lovers of Nigerian unity like OPC, communal peace and national progress
must rise up to this challenge.
Warning of possible consequences, Fasehun pointed out that eyewitnesses
indicated that Falae had been taken by strangers, just like the wife of
the Sun Newspapers Executive Director, Mrs. Toyin Nwosu, abducted last
week in Lagos.
His words: “At my turning 80, the entire world would expect me to be a
bridge builder. And I have prepared myself to be just that. But if any
missile is thrown at you, and it is likely to affect your eyeball, you
must avoid it at all costs. This is my view of the insult now being
unleashed, being flung at Nigeria by the enemies of Nigeria's unity.”
The kidnappers have reportedly demanded a ransom of N100 million.
Recalling that Falae had rendered “impeccable” service to the country as
a Permanent Secretary, then Minister of Finance and Secretary to the
Federal Government, Fasehun described the victim's current ordeal as
““When we heard that Falae was kidnapped we thought it was impossible, as
kidnappers would not be mad enough to kidnap a man of peace, a man who has
selflessly served Nigeria,” he said. “Falae is by any standard a leader of
the Yoruba people, a leader of Nigeria and a significant leader in Africa.
He is a leader of Afenifere. He was a leader of NADECO. And any assault on
him is an assault on Nigeria and Nigerians.”
He also frowned at the fact that 24 hours following the kidnap, the
Federal Government was yet to officially react to the incident.
“Over 24 hours after this disruption of the life of a dignitary,
government has not issued any statement; rather what we hear is a loud
silence from the Federal Government. It is a shame; it is a big shame,”
Recalling that Falae, as the Olu of Oba-Ile, was the ruling monarch of his
homestead, he urged all traditional rulers in Nigeria to also rise up for
According to the OPC President, the organisation felt concerned at Falae's
kidnap, which he described as an affront.
Fasehun feared that the kidnapping of the top-flight politician portended
ill for his fellows.
“We believe this is a political issue. And any politician in Nigeria must
make sure that Chief Olu Falae is released immediately,” he said.
“Otherwise OPC will take any step available to defend its own.”
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