By Ismail Omipidan
After watching his video last night, I thought of ignoring him because clearly from the outset, he demonstrated a lack of knowledge and understanding of the issues he attempted to dissect. If someone, who claims to have been involved in the alleged struggle for a better tomorrow cannot differentiate between an official press release and an opinion piece, then it shows the kind of struggle the individual has been pursuing.
Initially, I considered ignoring him, but I realized that failing to address his claims might lead unsuspecting Nigerians and other readers to believe his falsehoods. The need to let the whole word know that he filed for an asylum, if he indeed that was what he did, using false and misleading information, is another reason I am compelled to do this.
Before I go on to address the misinformation, let me make it clear that when I wrote my piece, I had no knowledge that Olawale Bakare, also known as Mandate, was doing anything. I had penned those thoughts approximately a month ago, and when Facebook brought memory of the Endsars protest, I decided it won’t be out of place to share that my thought since a more comprehensive one is on the way.
It was only after posting my piece that someone sent me his article, and I replied, stating, “Imagine, I did not know that anyone was doing anything. Thank God I wrote my piece.” Hence, do not assume undue significance; my article was not a response to yours. I had previously written about the Endsars movement last year as well. Thus, I do not have the time to waste on attention-seeking school dropouts like you.
That said, recall you were not the only one in that vicinity. I remember that when the event began on October 17, you were not among those addressing the crowd initially. It was when some of the conveners came to receive us where we were asked to come down from our vehicle and trekked that you seized the podium. Cross check from others who were there. We never drove to the venue. We trekked there. So, stop misinforming people.
Two, as we were trekking, the drivers of the vehicles drove behind us. But by the time we got there, we reckoned that the platform provided for the then Governor to address the protest may not be strong enough to accommodate him. So, it was suggested that he should use the open roof of the vehicle. If you remember, it was at the venue that he went into the vehicle. He never drove there as claimed by you.
Again, recall that after you provoked the attack on my Principal on October 17, you went into hiding but lied to the whole world that you were abducted by the then Osun State Government. You sold this lie to Omoyele Sowore who in turn asked Nigerians to bombard H. E Oyetola with phone calls to demand your release. But about a month later, precisely on November 12, 2020, you were on Rave FM Frank Talk where you admitted on a Live Radio Programme in Osogbo that you were never arrested or kidnapped by the Govt. of Osun or its agents.
Your testimony on that day vindicated my earlier position that Sowore was not portraying the truth about the #EndSARS protest in Osun. I hope you will have the honour to set the record straight.
Regarding the alleged deaths in Osun, they occurred in circumstances unrelated to Oyetola’s visit to the protest ground. The event leading to the first death occurred before the Governor’s arrival at the protest site, as he arrived at 2:35 pm, while the victim had been confirmed dead at 12:30 pm by LAUTECH hospital.
The second reported death occurred at Oke- Aiyepe which is several kilometers away from the protest ground and not on the route to the Government House. This happened at 4:35 pm, over 30 mins after Oyetola was evacuated from the violence-ridden protest ground and settled in the Government House .
None of these deaths occurred at the protest ground, and none of our security personnel fired any shot. Therefore, please stop the dissemination of misinformation.
Finally, recall that I was among those who calmed fray nerves the day there was disagreement in front of the secretariat over who should speak on behalf of the group when the Government team, led by the SSG came to attend to you guys. I was there. I Saw all that transpired. Recall you were given conditions before you were allowed to join the protest ab initio. But like I said, I will do a full disclosure soon. I only came this far to let Nigerians know that you do not deserve the attention you are seeking. Instead, you deserve our pity. It is a shame that the credible Osun Civil Society Groups’ inability to join the protest early enough gave characters like you the opportunity to display your disruptive behaviour.
Never again shall Osun yield the space to persons like you who seize every available opportunity to unleash terror and violence on our people and our State.