Sent Thugs After Journalist, Conquest magazine

Saki Student Union Leader ‘Sent Thugs After Journalist’ During Oyo LG Election

Habeeb Opeyemi, an Oyo-based journalist, has narrated his ordeal at the hands of a student union leader at the Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission (OYSIEC) office in Saki while observing local government elections in the state on Saturday.

He said that while waiting at the OYSIEC office in Saki, the student leader asked thugs to beat him up for being a journalist.

“I was at the OYSIEC office to report the election, and I was waiting from morning till around 2 pm, but the electoral officer was nowhere to be found. Three vehicles drove in. The first one belonged to the National Association of Oke-Ogun Students, accompanied by members of the Park Management System,” said Opeyemi.

“The thugs were saying they were going to attack people and telling other members to bring weapons. Seun Oladeji, the President of the National Association of Oke-Ogun Students, saw me and told the thugs to beat me because I am a journalist and would have (incriminating) videos on my phone.”

Opeyemi also told Conquest magazine that he did not see electoral officers distributing voting materials to polling units across Saki West Local Government Area and that no election was held in the local government area.

He said the thugs began throwing objects at him but he managed to escape.

Kareem Diwa, a resident of a community in Saki West, also told us that elections were not held in any community in the local government area.

“We did not vote during yesterday’s elections because voting materials were not provided. We waited from morning till evening, but we did not see any OYSIEC official,” Kareem said.

Isiaka Olagunju, the chairman of OYSIEC, announced on Sunday that the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) won all 33 council seats in Oyo, including Saki West.

Seun Oladeji denied the allegations when contacted. He also claimed Opeyemi was sponsored to fabricate stories against him.

“When he told you that, did he show you evidence – a video of when he was being assaulted or an injury he sustained as a result of such assault? All these questions are begging for answers. His stories were false and sponsored,” said Oladeji.

When contacted OYSIEC via the telephone number provided on their website, the person who responded told us he had worked with OYSIEC 10 years earlier and was now retired.

“I worked with OYSIEC 10 years ago, and I am now retired. I don’t know why my number is still on their website,” he said.

When we asked if he knew a staff member of OYSIEC, he said he did not know anyone who worked there.

Also contacted Adewale Osifeso, the spokesperson for the Oyo State Police Command. He asked for a text but had not responded at press time.