PLUS •How Fayose Haunted Daramola To Death (by Nigerian newspapers)
“The incumbent governor has been harassing the opposition with thugs and weapons to maim and destroy …… His agents have intimidated me severally and I am beginning to be uncomfortable with this situation. ….various characters parade my country home at night and my security man chases them away.” –(Late Dr. Ayodeji Daramola in his petition to IGP Sunday Ehindero in 2006 for security protection)
Dr. Ayodeji Daramola was not part of the crowd that wanted the job of Ayodele Fayose, the governor of Ekiti State, in 2007. Yet, he was sort after, begged and drafted into the political race by his admirers. While some people were busy stealing the peoples’ money, Daramola was busy providing essential services which are dear to the hearts of the people in the rural areas. While the government was busy increasing the yoke of poverty of the people of Ekiti state, Daramola was the one alleviating them through the Poverty Reduction program. Though until his untimely death in the hands of evil and atrocious people and their accomplices, not many outside Ekitiland knew this gentle man of the people, yet in terms of provision of basic communal infrastructures, Daramola was the de facto governor while Fayose was the de jure governor.
Like a progressive non-partisan technocrat, Dr. Ayodeji Daramola was a lecturer at the University of Lagos, Abeokuta campus and a consultant to the World Bank on food science. It was Otunba Niyi Adebayo, former Ekiti state governor who appointed him as the General Manager of the Ekiti State/World Bank joint venture called Ekiti Poverty Reduction Agency (EPRA). The appointment was based purely on merit and not politics; as Daramola was not a politician or a card carrying member of Adebayo’s political party or any political party for that matter.
Dr. Daramola immediately made a success of this new and unique program. It was grassroots oriented. The program impacted lives and living at the grassroots or village levels where it was needed. Basic social and economic infrastructures were the focus of the agency. Communities were asked to identify what program tops the list of their priorities from boreholes, health centers, schools, etc. Then, they were asked to contribute ten percent (10%) of the cost while the World Bank and the state government provided the rest of the cost. It was perhaps his success on the job that made some close friends of Daramola to persuade him to try his hands on the governance of the state so as to have a better and direct opportunity of impacting more positively on the life of Ekiti citizenry as a whole. That Daramola was successful in his job at the EKPRA is an understatement. Ekiti has about 120 communities each of which benefited from the poverty reduction program he handled. And so, it is very well understandable that the people loved him.
The idea of this type of World Bank assisted project was new to the people. Initially, the people were understandably skeptical but the skepticisms sooner gave way to praises and appreciation from the Obas, chiefs and their subjects when they saw the fruits of their efforts coming into fruition through Daramola’s faithful implementation of the program. They were used to lies and deceits by governments and political leaders. But Dr. Daramola was an exception. He delivered as promised. His words were his honor. Those communities who were hesitant initially changed their wait and see attitude to love, respect and honor for him more than the governor. Above all, they believed and trusted him. Traditional rulers and community leaders held him in high esteem. Chieftaincy titles were willingly conferred on him every where he went as a mark of respect and honor.
But it was not long, like Joseph in Egypt, a new governor came in 2003 that did know Daramola or appreciate his worth and contributions to the socio-economic development of Ekiti. Ayodele Fayose, never known or hard of in Ekiti, came from no where and bought his way to become the governor. His first sets of battles were directed towards those he perceived as enemies simply because they were more educated, enlightened, decent and progressive. Dr. Ayodeji Daramola naturally fell on the other side of Fayose’s drawn enemy line. Without consideration for good work or performance and experience Fayose was just removing people from positions and offices without exception because they were there before the purchase of his new found power.
When Fayose attempted to remove Daramola from office, the Ekiti Council of Traditional Rulers resisted him because their local domains have been the greatest beneficiaries of Daramola’s agency. Because he had endeared himself to their hearts not by bribery but by his performance the traditional rulers prevailed on Fayose to retain him in the Poverty Reduction Program. That was before Fayose bought over with cars and cash or cowed down some traditional rulers with threats of removal from office. Most importantly the World Bank, Daramola’s employer and the principal partner of the program, were not in hurry to change a winning captain of their team in Ekiti state.
Ayodele Fayose was not interested in reducing the poverty of the people of Ekiti State or in performing his job of governance honestly without ulterior motives like Dr. Daramola. So, there is no way he would tolerate him. The Bible says that except two people are in agreement, they cannot walk together. Fayose and Daramola were two opposite people, being like darkness and light respectively. In 2004, Fayose made another to remove Daramola from his position. He requested in writing that the World Bank removed Daramola as the General Manager of its program in the state. Fayose’s fear, reports say was Daramola’s increasing popularity in the state especially among the Traditional Rulers, elites and professionals. Because of his respect for elders unlike Fayose, Daramola sought the advice of the Obas who advised him to let Fayose know that he was not a politician or interested in politics and particularly being the next governor of the state. This, Daramola said in a press conference which made Fayose his friend again.
The more Daramola performed diligently and credibly on his assignment, the more his popularity among the people soared but so also his hatred by Fayose and his team. In May 2005, Fayose would not take it any more; he allegedly literarily killed the World Bank project by withdrawing the state’s contribution to the program. The World Bank, which did not want to loose the services of such a brilliant and productive man, moved Daramola to its Human Development Unit in Abuja as a consultant on its HIV/AIDS and Social Protection Projects. Yes, you cannot keep a good man down; the World Bank seems to be telling Fayose. Did he have ears to hear this? Time will tell.
But following the open hatred and persecution by Fayose; friends and admirers of Daramola, among which were traditional rulers, elites and opinion leaders who have seen him on the ground, drafted him into the political race for the governorship of Ekiti state under the platform of Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP). After wide and wise consultation, Dr. Ayodeji Daramola eventually accepted the draft into the governorship race. Because Daramola was never a politician, he was not a registered member of any of the many political parties in the country. He left Abuja for his ward to register as a member of the PDP, at Ijan-Ekiti. The Ekiti State Chairman of the PDP also happens to come from the same home town of Daramola. Yet, most probably, on the orders from above, Daramola was refused PDP’s registration at his own ward. Daramola had to go back to Abuja where he was registered at the PDP’s national office.
On August 13, 2006, at a Press conference in his home town, Dr. Ayodeji Daramola formally announced that he was joining the governorship race for Ekiti State under the same platform of the PDP. But Daramola would not live to read the printed news of his declaration as he was murdered in cold blood few hours later. Was this a coincidence? I don’t think so. Everything points to a conspiracy theory here. I will think that this beastliness was planned by those who saw his ambition as a threat to theirs.
The threat and its source to Dr. Daramola’s life were never hidden. It was known to him, his friends, and family members and made known to the police authorities. I want to rely heavily here on the information from Mr. Femi Falana, an eminent lawyer, nationalist and human right advocate that I have known and respected since his path crossed mine at the University of Lagos. Mr. Falana is also the lawyer to the slain Daramola. According to him, Daramola provided more than enough clue and evidence of why he was killed and who were either the killers or their sponsors and conspirators long before they killed him.
Falana said that Daramola had before his assassination, made a written report of threats to his life to the police authorities. In a letter addressed to the Deputy Inspector General of Police, B Department (DIGOPS), Force Headquarters, Abuja, FCT, Daramola reportedly told the police that the people of Ekiti had been encouraging him to become the next governor of the state. This encouragement, he said, has fuelled his “personal ambition to heed their call to run for the office of Governor of Ekiti State.” His campaign, he further wrote in the letter, “should have long begun but we are being careful since the incumbent governor has been harassing the opposition with thugs and weapons to maim and destroy such ambition. His agents have intimidated me severally and I am beginning to be uncomfortable with this situation.” Dr. Daramola therefore through the letter asked for police security protection to forestall any harm or danger coming to him because “various characters parade my country home at night and my security man chases them away.”
Awe Femi, you are the lawyer here, I am not one. Should this statement by Dr. Daramola already with the police not be admissible in evidence in court without further corroboration as a dying declaration? Is this statement by Daramola not enough to bring charges of murder against Ayodele Fayose described in the letter as “the incumbent governor” who “has been harassing the opposition with thugs and weapons to main and destroy”? Is this statement not enough to impeach Fayose to remove his so-called prosecutorial immunities? Is this case not worse than corruption and money laundry for which another state governor was impeached and charged to court without bail? Should there be any double standard here in the same country and in the same political party?
There were further reports that campaign posters of Dr. Daramola were directed by some political leaders of the PDP to be destroyed in his home town. Prior to his assassination, it was also alleged that the PDP Chairman of his local government made an edit prohibiting vigilante groups from guarding his town. Youths and volunteers from the town have been putting the town under guard and watch between 10.00pm and 4.00am daily before they were banned. Was the ban to allow the evil men unhindered freedom to do their deed? The youths in the town now claim that the murder squad that killed Dr. Daramola would not have had their ways if the vigilante group was not banned by the Council Chairman. Maybe that was why the youths went on rampage lighting up the homes and property of PDP leaders in the town after Daramola was killed.
What did the police do about the letter of Dr. Daramola? Why did the police not provide the requested security protection in view of the overwhelming evidence that Ekiti state has become very violent under Fayose? Did the police hear about the alleged Fayose Murder Squad (FMS) in the state? Have they investigated this for authenticity? What has become of the previous cases of murder and attempted murder and harassment of political leaders and eminent people of the state reported to the police since Fayose became the governor? Why have the police not invited Fayose for interview or interrogation especially about Dr. Daramola’s murder? What of the Press Secretary to Fayose who announced the coming of the murder squad only hours before it struck and killed Dr. Daramola? Is he still a free man? What of the PDP local government chairman who banned vigilante that would have either prevented the murder of Daramola or facilitated their arrest? Is he still a freeman? Do they also have immunity like Fayose? I think these are enough leads to help the Inspector General of Police in his investigation. And I think he needs to act quickly on these instead of threatening the press with arrest.
What is the progress of Daramola’s investigation? Ekiti deserve daily updates from police until the killers and I mean real killers and their sponsors are in court. Can President Obasanjo sleep well in spite of these killing in his party and region? Don’t the Daramola’s killers deserve presidential curses also? What is going on in the mind of Governor Fayose? Has he also been having a good sleep since Daramola slept and never to wake up? Has Fayose visited the family members of Dr. Daramola since he was killed? Why is this investigation taking so long? Is it like that of William following the path of that of Bola Ige? Is it to bury the victim and forget him? Daramola’s case should be the easiest to investigate if the police are not turning their eyes away from the murderers. Members of the murder squad were allegedly seen drinking at a beer parlor in Ijan till they left for Daramola’s home to kill him. From the bottles of beer and cups left behind, if we don’t have the Stone Age police, they should be able to collect enough forensic evidence from the beer parlor that will lead to these killers of Daramola.
Dr. Ayodeji Daramola should not be part of the statistics of unsolved murders that litters the Nigerian political terrain. No, because he was not a politician. He was a technocrat drawn by the need to serve his people and make a difference from the political norm of stealing in the name of serving. With the high political profile and media coverage that followed Bola Ige and Funso Williams’s murder, one would think that by now, the murderers, however highly placed should have been arrested and prosecuted. But we have the Nigeria police which because of corruption, ineptitude, lack of modern training and equipment can turn a case of fist decree murder with available body and weapon into a case of missing person. The case of Dr. Daramola should be different. He provided enough evidence of his murder and named names before he was killed.
Let me echo the voice of those who say that we don’t need the Nigeria Police as it is currently structured. Why should an Okoronkwo or Babangida or Musa be the commissioner of police for Ekiti state or a Divisional Police officer at Omuo or Ikole Ekiti or an Adebayo and Ehindero in Enugu or Nasarawa? I don’t mean to be an ethnic bigot. But in terms of efficiency and effectiveness, we need police officers who are part of the local communities and who know about the people’s values, culture and tradition. How will an average informant trust a stranger of a police officer? We need community policing, whereby each police unit will be staffed and commanded by the local people. The bottom line, we have to decentralize policing in Nigeria with at least a federal, state, local government police system. Effective prevention and detection of crimes need the people from the local community that can trust the police with case solving information.
Can the police honestly arrest and prosecute the killers of Dr. Ayodeji Daramola? Yes and No. Yes, if it is not officially sponsored or if government or party officials from the local, state and federal, do not have their hands soaked in his blood. Otherwise, the best that we will have is for wrong and innocent people to be arrested and released later or prosecuted knowing that there would be no conviction for lack of evidence, while the guilt are encouraged to escaped or given succor and solace to enjoy their blood money. No, if these same officials planned and executed this heinous crime and have their hands soaked in the blood of our brother. Surely they will not want to expose and embarrass themselves especially with the elections coming and many politicians like Fayose eying a “sekon tam”. Talking of state murder reminds one of the case of the late Dele Giwa and the government of General Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida (GIBB).
If I have my ways, I will rather not want Dr. Daramola’s body be buried and forgotten until the right culprits are arrested with convincing and convicting evidence and charged to court. The soul of Dr. Daramola has gone to rest in peace, let us keep the body with Fayose and PDP, until the crime is solved; lest, he is forgotten. Ekiti people need daily updates from the Inspector General of Police about how the investigation is progressing. But if the Nigeria Police will fail the Nigeria, Ekiti and Ijan-Ekiti people not surprisingly this time, as it is mostly anticipated, hope should not be lost. The Ekiti people should conduct their own investigation their own way, tried the murderers in their court, pronounce the deserved judgment and punishment on them accordingly. Before the corrupt police and judicial systems, Ekiti people have a way of dealing with wayward people or criminal elements in their midst and that was why they were very few in those good old days, because they knew the consequences. They also knew that in people’s judgment like the Gods’, there is no partiality and justice is served without fear or favor.
Dear Governor Ayodele Fayose, I said to you earlier in one of my articles, when I did not know that this was coming that as the thief executive of the state and the thief security officer, you will be held responsible for every blood that is shed in Ekiti state. I have not changed my mind. Nobody needs your N5million reward for information of the killers of Dr. Daramola. In the first place, is that your personal money or the peoples’ money again? Maybe it came from the integrated agric project. I hope it is not that you are so sure that nobody will come up with any true and authentic information about this crime against God and humanity that you just decided to bold face announced your reward.
Dear Governor Ayodele Fayose, if the investigators of this case cannot ask you this question, I am now asking you pointedly; who killed Dr. Ayodeji Daramola, your would-have-been challenger in the Ekiti state governorship race in the primaries of PDP? You know that he would have defeated you in the PDP; don’t you? You were afraid of this defeat, weren’t you? Tell the truth. What is it that you know if anything about this murder? If I were the Inspector General of Police, in view of the overwhelming circumstantial evidence adduced above and from all accounts, you will be my first suspect in this case. This will be purely following the words of our elders that: “Aje ke lana, omo ku leni, tani ko mo wipe aje ana lopomoje”. That is: A witch cried yesterday and the child died today; who will not know that it is the witch that killed the child. But I however will graciously presume your innocence until the contrary is proved either in a court law or in the court of the people.
I challenge you to respond to this article and answer all the questions raised. I know that you will read it or your friends will read and tell you like the previous ones. Send a copy of your response to my e-mail address provided above. Only bloody hands can take blood money, so, keep your N5m or give it to yourself if you have information that will lead to the successful arrest, prosecution and conviction of the real killers of our illustrious son and brother, Dr. Daramola. One more thing, Mr. Governor, until other people are convicted of this crime, forget your dream for the second term, as you don’t deserve it. And you are not even fit to hold any public office again in Ekiti until this cloud of many suspicions over you are cleared and believed to be clearly cleared by the Ekiti people.
If nobody or group is ever arrested and prosecute beyond every iota of doubt, and convicted for the murder of Dr. Daramola, note that the cloud of suspicion for his death will hang over your head till your own last day here on this earth and maybe beyond.
One thing is sure; all those behind the murder of Daramola, have murdered sleep and they will sleep no more. So, Fayose, again, who killed Dr. Ayodeji Daramola? Tell us.
* * * Dr. Samuel Bayo Arowolaju
How Fayose Haunted Dr Ayo Daramola To Death
• Assassins Paid N25,000 Each, Promised N1m, Bus (Excerpts from THENEWS Magazine, PM News & Saharareporters)
• The Task Before Justice Adewale Fowowe, Ekiti State Judiciary, NJC
– THE EAGLE WATCH REPORT
As hearings resume in the consolidated trial of Dr Ayodeji Daramola and Tunde Omojola’s murder case on Octber 16, 2017, at Ekiti State High Court, Ado-Ekiti, before Justice Adewale Fowe, close observers of what has been dubbed a “secret trial to help save the skins of Governor Ayodele Fayose and his aides” over their alleged complicity in the murders will look up to the trial judge, Justice Fowowe, and the entire Ekiti State Judiciary and National Judicial Council (NJC) to ask the most critical question: Where are the suspects arrested in 2006 over Dr Daramola’s murder.
Daramola was assassinated on August 14, 2006 after serial threats to his life by the then Governor Ayodele Fayose and his aides over perceived Daramola’s governorship ambition, climaxing in Fayose forcing Daramola to renounce his alleged governorship ambition on the state radio and television after which he was forced to resign from his job at the World Bank-assisted project in Ekiti State.
Daramola was the General Manager/Chief Executive Officer of the World Bank-assisted Ekiti State Community-based Poverty Reduction Agency (EKCPRA) with counterpart funding by the state government; a job Daramola did diligently with unprecedented development projects in all Ekiti communities that made Daramola to become a house-hold name, thus prompting Ekiti elites, traditional rulers and community leaders to urge him to contest for the governorship seat in 2007.
Fayose became jittery and warned Daramola against governorship ambition with his aides launching direct attacks against the World Bank official.
At a time, Fayose threatened withdrawal of the state’s counterpart funding unless Daramola was transferred from the state by the World Bank.
Constantly, Fayose’s thugs tormented Daramola with strange faces visiting his Ado-Ekiti house at nights firing gunshots. On the streets, Fayose’s loyalists regularly harassed him.
Many times, security agents came to Daramola’s rescue, advising him on the route to take while going to his family in Lagos and while coming back to Ekiti State.
After some Good Samaritans in Fayose’s security details smuggled out a security report to Dr Daramola indicating that his life was at risk, the World Bank official approached some
Obas with the security report after which Daramola’s voice was heard on the state radio and television renouncing his alleged governorship ambition as ordered by Fayose.
On August 13, 2006, at a press conference attended by the then Commissioner for Information, Gboyega Oguntuase and Fayose’s Chief Press Secretary, Idowu Adelusi, reporters were told of a purported security report indicating that a popular politician in Ekiti State would be killed and blamed the murder on Fayose.
In what observers described as clearly a characteristic pre-emptive tactic by Fayose while planning evil to plead alibi, few hours after Fayose’s media men made the announcement, Dr Daramola was assassinated in his Ijan-Ekiti country home while the governor was away from the state.
Later, Nigerian media reported that nine of the suspects arrested in connection with the assassination of Dr Daramola confessed that they were given N25,000 to murder the World Bank consultant. The suspects are Segun Balogun, Busuyi Aladesanmi, Emeka Andrew, Aina Ayorinde (currently a PDP member in the House of Representatives and an ally of Governor Fayose, Taiwo Olanipekun, Felix Anichukwu, Ogbonna Ajah, and Olumide Ojo, who all confessed to receiving N25,000 to kill Daramola.
Olumide Ojo, who was the main link man to the sponsors of the assassination, according to the suspects in their confessional statements, was killed by the police while trying to escape from the custody.
The death of Olumide, who was the main links man to the sponsors of the murder, was responsible for the inability of the suspects to recognise the alleged sponsors, Dayo Okondo and Goke Olatunji, when they were being paraded before the suspects by the police. Olumide was the only man who took the “contract”. He later co-opted other members of the gang, led by Taiwo Olanipekun.
In all, 19 suspects were quizzed by the police over the killing. The suspects named Goke Olatunji, Fayose’s personal assistant, as their alleged sponsor.
Some of the gang members told the police during interrogation that after Olumide got Taiwo Olanipekun involved, they did not know that Olumide and Taiwo Olanipekun had been paid to kill Dr Daramola. According to them, Olumide and Taiwo told other gang members that they were going for robbery.
Specifically, Taiwo told the police when the gang members were being paraded publicly that Olatunji and one other man from Ikere (who at the time of the suspects arrest was at large) allegedly approached Olumide to kill Dr Daramola.
Taiwo Olanipekun said: “We went to Ijan-Ekiti to kill Dr Daramola. Seven of us went to his house to kill him. Olumide is one of us but he is dead now. He was killed by the police when he wanted to run.
“When they brought the job to Olumide, they said there is one man they would want us to kill. They said the man was coming from abroad. They met in an hotel. The first day they met, they talked. On the second day, they also met there and they gave Olumide N25,000 and later, I also got N25,000 too.
“They said they would give us N1m each and a bus when we finish the job. One Goke Olatunji and one man approached us through Olumide. They took us to Daramola’s house in Ijan. They said he was not around. They said they would let us know when he is in town. When we later got to his house, the night guards were sleeping.
“We woke them up and collected a gun from them and asked them to take us to Dr Daramola’s room. We used three guns, including the one we collected from the guards.
“When we finished, we threw their gun away. Three of us entered his room. I got N2,600 and a handset from what we stole in his house.”
Later, it later emerged that the second man from Ikere was Chief Dayo Okondo, who the SSS Investigating Team commissioned by President Olusegun Obasanjo had named in its report as the Coordinator of the Fayose’s Killer Squad in the state. Okondo was later arrested by the police after his whereabouts were unknown for several days after he was declared wanted.
Other members of the killer squad, according to the SSS report, included Olatunji and Fayose’s Chief Security Officer, Gbenga Timothy Joseph.
Ademola Adeusi, Dr Daramola’s Personal Assistant, alleged in his statement to the police that the government of Governor Fayose approached him with N1m to help paint a picture of armed robbery attack. He turned down the offer.
As the trial continues in Justice Adewale Fowowe’s court on August 1, what Nigerians, especially Dr. Daramola’s family, expect from Justice Fowowe is to ask for the whereabouts of the suspects arrested in Dr Daramola’s murder and kept in prison custody in 2006. It is also a task for Ekiti State Judiciary and NJC to test their integrity after Daramola’s family petitioned them pointing attention to a secret trial kept away from the families of the slain victims.
Media leaks exposed a fake witnesses list who are to testify that Fayose and his aides knew nothing about Daramola and Omojola’s murders.
During the last sitting, Fayose’s men brought a fake witness, one Ezekiel Oluyemi Oke, popularly called Olu Apasco, who was formerly one of Omojola’s supporters, to testify against the same Omojola in favour of Fayose’s aides.
Followers of the case are now saying that the fake witnesses being listed to give false evidence will not serve the cause of justice.
What is expected from Justice Fowowe, therefore, is to demand to see the arrested suspects to give their evidence in open court in the presence of the members of Dr Daramola’s family on August 1, 2017.
Anything short of this is nothing but a judicial conspiracy to protect criminals while the innocent victims were wasted without getting justice.
July 29, 2017
The PM News report (Monday, August 14, 2006)
Breaking News: Dr Ayo Daramola, Ekiti Gubernatorial Aspirant, Assassinated (Monday, 14 August 2006 )
By Phil Tam-Al Alalibo and Chris Dimkpa
Three weeks after the assassination of Funsho Williams, a gubernatorial aspirant in Ekiti state, Dr Ayo Daramola was this morning shot dead in his home. Details of his death remain sketchy. Riots is said to have erupted in parts of the state.
The killing spree in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) continued this morning as another governorship aspirant of the party in Ekiti State, Dr. Ayo Daramola, was murdered this morning by unidentified assassins. P.M.News investigations revealed that Dr. Daramola, a consultant to the World Bank country office in Abuja on Social Protection and HIV/AIDS, was slaughtered in his bedroom in his home town, Ijan-Ekiti, around 1 a.m. today by assassins. P.M.News gathered that the governorship aspirant was killed in the same manner Engr. Funsho Williams was killed in Lagos on 27 July. He was stabbed in the chest and strangled. His attackers also reportedly opened his stomach with the knife. He was said to have been rushed to a private hospital in the town where he was confirmed dead.
The popular Ekiti PDP governorship aspirant, it was learnt, held a rally yesterday in the town where he told the people of his plan to improve their lot if elected governor of the state, come 2007. Investigations revealed further that Dr. Daramola resigned from his job at the Ekiti Poverty Relief Agency, (EKPRA), a World Bank funded project two months ago following persistent harassment and intimidation by the Governor Ayo Fayose-led administration in the state. Fayose, P.M.News gathered further, felt threatened by the laudable programmes carried out by EKPRA, led by Dr. Daramola, which included renovation of rural roads and markets, sinking of boreholes and construction of community centres for the rural poor. Fayose was alleged to have written many petitions to the head of the World Bank country office in Abuja, to remove Daramola from his post and send someone else to head the agency.
But rather than do the governor’s bidding, the World Bank cancelled the project in Ekiti State and moved Daramola to its head office in Abuja and appointed him a consultant. Prior to his killing, P.M.News gathered that Dr. Daramola had been threatened by supporters of Fayose to drop his governorship ambition or face the consequences. As a result of this, the late Daramola reportedly went on air, at both the state radio and television, to announce that he was no longer contesting. Not satisfied with this, a security report prepared by Fayose’s security aides was said to have been presented to Daramola, asking him to leave the state for his safety.
Afraid for his life, the late Daramola ran to all the traditional rulers in the state, showing them the security report asking him to leave the state. The traditional rulers, it was learnt, met at the palace of the Ewi of Ado Ekiti, Oba Rufus Adejuyigbe, and advised the late Daramola to resign from his job with EKPRA. Following his resignation and knowing the circumstances under which he resigned, the World Bank recalled him to its Abuja office and made him a consultant. Before his death this morning, P.M.News gathered that supporters of Fayose had earlier attacked him in his house but he escaped. Investigations revealed further that Daramola’s decision to join the governorship race was influenced by some traditional rulers who prevailed on him to contest the election in 2007.
It was gathered that the murdered PDP aspirant printed his posters two weeks ago after he was presented to President Olusegun Obasanjo in Abuja as a replacement for Fayose in the 2007 election by top PDP chieftains in Ekiti. Meanwhile, riot has broken out at Ijan-Ekiti following the assassination of the PDP chieftain. Investigations this morning revealed that residents of the town had started burning houses of PDP chieftains in the town.
There are also reports that the police in the state have arrested two of the hoodlums who participated in the attack on another PDP chieftain in the state, Mr. Taye Fasuba, last night. Fasuba, former Ado Ekiti council boss, was reportedly attacked in his home last night by people believed to be supporters of Fayose. The police said they have stepped up investigation into the murder of the aspirant.
Saharareporters Report On Daramola’s Assassination (2006)
Fayose Aides Arrested Over Daramola’s Murde
The noose may finally be closing in on the “killers’ squad” in Ekiti State, Southwest of Nigeria as the public outcry over poor police handling of the murder of Ayo Daramola became loud and critical of the Inspector General Police, Mr. Sunday Ehindero who is personally handling the “investigations” as earlier reported the shoddy handling of the murder investigations based upon the perceived closeness of the IG to Governor Fayose has led to the involvement of the State Security Service (SSS) as well as letters written by Chief Afe Babalola to Obasanjo citing flaws in the police handling of the case.
As earlier reported by Saharareporters, the state security service (SSS) had earlier written a damning report about the existence of a “Killer Squads” in Ekiti State and other states in Nigeria have swung into action as a way of frustrating the top hierarchy of the police force from bungling the murder case
Since last week Wednesday, the SSS arrested four persons who sources told Saharareporters have made confessional statements about their role in the killings in Ekiti State.
According to press reports, over 11 individuals including students have been murdered in Ekiti State since 2003 by killer squads directly sponsored by the governor, Ayo Fayose. The arrested people are: Odunayo Adeomi; Francis Ariwajoye; Abegunde Femi and Dele Ogunleye. They are part of the killer squads that were suspected in the killing of PDP gubernatorial candidate, Ayo Daramola who was murdered by assassins in his bedroom in Ijan-Ekiti as he made an emergency trip to his home state from his Lagos base.
Also being sought is the driver to Major Dayo Okondo (rtd), Ajayi Egbo who was said to have driven an assassin squad to kill the former Chairman to Ado-Ekiti local government, Mr. Taiye Fasuba over his disagreements with Governor Fayose in the handling of local government funds in the state (Major Dayo Okondo is named as a member of the “Kiler Squad” in Ekiti State). The governor is accused by the EFCC of embezzling N11 billion of the local government funds since 2003. Ajayi Egbo (the driver to Major Dayo Okondo (rtd)) in earlier arrest has confessed to the crime. He told police authorities that they were contracted by Goke Adetunji to kill Taiye Fasuba but two members of the assassin squad were heavily drugged and shot at each other leading to the death of one of them at Fasuba’s house while the other one died later in the hospital. Goke Olatunji-currently facing corruption and money laundering charges alongside Governor Fayose and his deputy, Mrs. Olujimi- have admitted to sending the squad saying they had no intention of killing Fasuba. According to him, they merely wanted to rough him up a little bit” so that he can back off troubling Governor Fayose about local government funds.
Also revealed to Saharareporters is the arrest of the Chief Security Officer to Governor Fayose, Mr. Gbenga Joseph-a strong member of the killer squad- by the police authorities in Abuja, Mr. Gbenga Joseph a police officer has since been detained at the Abuja headquarters of the police force since last week. It is strange that the police authorities did not make public his subsequent arrest and interrogation. His arrest follows the arrest and interrogation of the state commissioner of information, Mr. Gboyega Oguntuase.
He was quizzed by the police to explain why he issued a public statement about the intention of opposition groups to “kill a top PDP aspirant” in the state on the day Ayo Daramola was murdered. At 4:00 PM on that fateful day Ayo Daramola was murdered in his bedroom, Gboyega made a public statement that was widely read on television and radio across the state about the impending strike on a PDP chieftain. Oguntuase was said to have confessed to the police authorities that it was Governor Fayose who’d asked that he make the strange public statements on that day. He said he was merely acting on orders from his boss. Ayo Daramola was killed in the night of August 14th 2006, the same day the commissioner of information made his pronouncement about the intended killings.
The new twists in the investigation is coming on the heels of a public pronouncement by the Director General of the SS, Col. Kayode Are that most state chief executives maintain killer squads used to harass, intimidate and murder political opponents in the states. Though he made a promise to release his agency’s findings to the public, the DG of SSS was yet to make any further releases or pronouncements on those claims.
Sources close to the SSS said there have been immense pressures on the SSS by PDP leaders not to make further revelations to that effect as the PDP controlled states were said to be most guilty of maintaining killer squads. The Inspector of Police, Mr. Sunday Ehindero is expected to officially interrogate, Governor Ayo Fayose on Tuesday in Abuja.
Our source quoted the governor as saying, “well, I know they have closed in on me, I was nobody before I became governor, if they get me, I will only be back to being nobody, but I hate to go to prison” this was contrary to a public statement credited to him.
We could not confirm if governor Fayose was already informed about the massive evidence against him on all fronts, the next week(s) may be decisive for his political career. If his recently reported outbursts are anything to go by, the governor may as well have taken the American saying “Object in the mirror are closer than they appear” to heart.