OSUN 2014 ELECTION AND THE KILLING OF CHIEF BOLA IGE
Recently, who killed Bola Ige question propped up during the screening of ministers by the Senate. As the ministerial nominee
from Osun State appeared before the upper legislative chamber, the question was asked from the most unexpected quarter.
Senator Uzamere who had just defected from the All Progressives Congress to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had to fight to
put the poser to the nominee. He wanted to know what role Jelili Adesiyan played in the sensational murder. He wanted to know
why the man had been linked with Ige's murder. He wanted to know why the man was detained for more than three years for
allegedly enlisting the men who pumped hot lead into the Cicero of Esa Oke.
Some PDP Senators, in sympathy with the man and invoking party solidarity, tried to shield the nominee from answering the
billion dollar question. The more they tried to do so, the more Uzamere insisted. Adesiyan, as could be expected, denied. His
supporters in the Senate said he could not be sworn on the Quran, but he said he would not mind if one could be found. He said
he had no reason to kill Ige who was his mentor. He said Ige had sponsored his education and was a benefactor to his entire family.
He then gave way to emotion. The man cried.
The point here is not whether he was actually guilty as charged. Uzamere probably knew that could not be achieved at that point.
His objective must have been to tell the world that the matter would not die until the criminals are apprehended and put through
the mill of justice. The Senator wanted the world to know that Adesiyan had, at a point, been linked with the high-profile
assassination of the former Attorney General of the Federation.
He probably wanted to remind the security forces that the matter could never be swept under the carpet; that it is one case whose
file should never be closed until the killers are found. And he achieved that much.
Those of us who believe in justice and believe that injustice to one is injustice to all, owe Uzamere gratitude for bringing up the
Does it really matter if Adesiyan sails through? In any case, having been freed by the law, unless there is fresh evidence linking him
to the death, he cannot be stopped on that score. However, it is not only in the interest of Ige's political associates and the general
public that the murderers be unveiled. It is in the interest of all those mentioned and detained for the murder, too. Until the killers
are unmasked, they remain suspects in the eyes of the public.
One of the unresolved murders probably masterminded by political considerations, the most prominent figure whose
assassination was cited was the late Chief Bola Ige. He was an ebullient politician, an orator, a redoubtable debater and perhaps
the most colourful politician in the South West at the time he was killed. Today, as was the refrain then, the question remains: who
killed Bola Ige? It is on record that late Chief Bola Ige served as a minister under PDP led Federal Government in Nigeria.
More than a decade after, the assassins must be think it is all over. They are now occupying important offices in the land. They are
preparing for even more important ones at different levels. We may not know who killed Ige; at least for now. The courts may not
be in position to pronounce anyone guilty. The Police may be unwilling to arrest and arraign the real killers again.
Osun state, in view of the masterminds and backers of the crime may be unable to institute thorough probe into the matter. But, it
must be observed that what man cannot see, God does. Who man cannot apprehend, God, the ultimate judge, will. Only a
myopic person would believe that the matter is over. It is not. Ige fought all through life. Even now, he continues to fight. And,
victory is certain.
Who killed Ige? To what avail? Who was so desperate to ensure that Ige did not mount the soap box to campaign against the PDP
in 2014? Why and on whose instruction did the Police arrest some mad men alongside strong suspects perhaps to discredit the
entire investigation process and set the stage for setting all suspects free? Did the Oyo State government diligently handle the
case? Given the fact that he was still a top official of the federal government at the time, did the Obasanjo administration do
enough to get to the root of the matter?
It is a shame that Ige and Obasanjo were such good friends. He was a great fighter while alive. The people of Osun State could not
believe that such a cruel fate could befall their darling one. From the way Osun people saw the prosecution of suspects handled,
they lost the will to live. Osun people simply gave up on the Nigerian society. As a judge of the Court of Appeal, they knew the
prosecution could not obtain justice the way the matter was being tried.
As August 9, 2014 approaches the people of Osun State must remember a heartbreaking moment on December 2001, when Bola
Ige was killed. After all these years, his murder remains unsolved — another death in a long line of unsolved assassinations and
extralegal disappearances since 1999. Chief James Ajibola Ige was killed while serving in the PDP administration of President
Obasanjo. Some of the names that have been bandied in connection with his killing included that of Adebayo Adedamola aka
Fryo, Daramola Ezekiel, Sergeant Oye Oniyanda, Nelson Kumoye, Kareem Lawal, Adebayo Adegoke, Oluwole Ogunjimi, Iyiola
Omisore, Lambe Oyasope, Kunle Alao and Jelili Adesiyan.
Only in Nigeria could a serving attorney general and minister of justice be killed and those suspected of the dastardly act be free to
roam and go about their daily lives as if nothing egregious and dastardly didn't happen. The assassination of Chief James Ajibola
Idowu Ige, former Attorney General and Minister of Justice is still fresh in our minds. Also troubling, is the unwillingness of PDP led
Federal Government since 1999 to prosecute the perpetrators of the heinous crime.
It must be added that one does not wish to diminish the importance of finding and prosecuting the killers of all other Nigerians
who have lost their lives to political assassinations, such as Mr. Harry Marshal. Nevertheless, the assassination of Chief Bola Ige,
who was murdered in cold blood in his bedroom under PDP led Federal Government, while he was Minister of Justice, is
fundamentally crucial. One wonders who in Nigeria can get justice, if a Minister of Justice could not. The people of Osun State
should vote for APC as a mark of honour for late Bola Ige.
Curiously, Chief Ige was murdered by hired assassins who were allegedly on the pay list of some members of People's Democratic
Party (PDP). When Bola Ige was assassinated, he remained a principal figure in the volatile central politics of Nigeria. The people of
Osun State should remember that Chief Ige was a direct threat to PDP in South West politics. The was a huge threat to the party,
the PDP, especially in the southwest states of Nigeria. He was also a threat to PDP because Chief Ige, was in control of the Yoruba
southwest politics, until his assassination.
Thus, it was alleged that he was assassinated to pave the way for the rigging of elections in the southwest for PDP at that time.
Surprisingly, the PDP's theft of the people's mandate in many southwest states apart from Lagos lasted for almost a decade.
According to Emile Zola, if you shut up the truth and bury it under the ground, it will only grow, and gather itself into an explosive
power that will burst through and blow up everything in its way.
The recent political events in the southwest have corroborated Zola's view – as the progressive flank – to which Chief Ige belonged,
has regained the entire southwest states from the PDP.
The people of Osun should vote against PDP because it was under PDP that Chief Bola Ige was murdered as a mark of respect for
late Bola Ige. That will permanently silence and put to rest the era of atrocious politics in the South West.
Written by Erasmus Ikhide.
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