Police foil attempt to burn Ekiti Assembly
Operatives of the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) of the Ekiti State Police Command, yesterday, repelled alleged attempt by some hoodlums to burn Ekiti State House of Assembly Complex.
The incident happened around 4.00a.m., yesterday, when the miscreants were said to have scaled the fence and made spirited efforts to spray a section of the complex with petrol and set it ablaze, thereby creating an atmosphere of security breach.
Crisis started in the Assembly on Tuesday, following the election of the lawmaker representing Ikole constituency 1, Gboyega Aribisogan, as the Speaker, to replace Funminiyi Afuye, who died on October 19, 2022.
In the election conducted during plenary, Aribisogan garnered 15 votes to defeat the lawmaker representing Emure Constituency, Olubunmi Adelugba, who scored 10.
The election created bad blood among the lawmakers, as some of them and powerful leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), who were said to be favourably disposed to Adelugba’s speakership, have been spoiling for showdown.
Sensing danger and ominous signs of security breach, the Police Commissioner, Mr. Morounkeji Adesina, deployed his men to shut down the Assembly to ensure safety and security of lives and property.
The Assembly workers were also chased out in the process to prevent being caught in the web of looming factional crisis.
Speaking on the alleged arson attack, the Command’s Public Relations Officer, DSP Sunday Abutu, confirmed the incident.
Abutu revealed that the hoodlums, numbering 10, carrying two 25-litre kegs of petroleum, had allegedly invaded the Assembly around 4.00a.m. and made efforts to set it ablaze.
He said the men and officers of RRS, who were on ground and strategically positioned, repelled them. The hoodlums were chased into the nearby bush.
Abutu said: “I can confirm to you that the hoodlums, carrying two kegs filled with petrol and armed with cutlasses and other weapons, came to burn down the assembly at the wee hours of today (Friday).
“They though that the police had left the place, because our patrol vehicles had been withdrawn from the two gates. They thought the place was no longer under security cover. They came through a section of the complex. They were resisted…”
“The RRS operatives gave them a hot chase into the bush and recovered two kegs filled with petrol from them, among other dangerous weapons.
“We want to warn our people not to turn the Assembly into a theatre of war. It is an arm of government that must be respected. They call it Hallowed Chambers, so people should desist from creating unnecessary crisis…”
“Let me also said that our men and officers are on ground to repel any dangerous moves being made by mischief makers to spark up trouble in any part of the state”.
Abutu said the police did not arrest anyone in connection with the attempted arson, but revealed that they were on their trail.