President Tinubu on phone with me every day till abducted pupils were released, Oyebanji tells Afenifere leaders

Governor Oyebanji addressing Afenifere delegation, led by the Ondo State Chairman of the group, Chief Korede Duyile

*Also, RCCG  commiserates with Oyebanji, Ekiti over the killing of two traditional rulers 

Ekiti State Governor, Mr Biodun Oyebanji on Tuesday disclosed that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu was with him on telephone everyday till the abducted school pupils were released.

The Governor stated this while receiving a delegation of the Yoruba Socio-Political group, Afenifere, who came on a condolence visit to his office in Ado-Ekiti on Tuesday.

The Afenifere delegation, led by the Ondo State Chairman of the group, Chief Korede Duyile, was sent by the National Leader of Afenifere, Chief Reuben Fasoranti to commiserate with the Government and people of Ekiti State over the killing of two traditional rulers and abduction of some pupils of a private school and their teachers last week. The pupils and their teachers have since regained freedom from the kidnappers’ den.

Governor Oyebanji, who described the gruesome killing of the two traditional rulers as sacrilegious and “an affront to Ekiti people and the Yoruba race”, assured that the perpetrators would not go unpunished.

He also described the kidnapping of the school pupils and their teachers as a dangerous dimension, hence the need to mobilise forces to rescue the children.

He said he remained grateful to the President, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu staying on top of the situation, a development, which he said motivated everyone involved to put in their best in rescuing the children.

“It will be a mark of ingratitude on my part, if I don’t say this here today, Mr President really tried, from the minute it happened till the last day the children were released, the President was talking to me on daily basis, giving appropriate directives on the way out. And I want Afenifere to thank him”, he said.

Governor Oyebanji said in spite of the release of the children, security agencies have continued the search for the perpetrators of the heinous crimes, and bring them to justice. This, he said, was necessary in order to put an end to the dastardly acts.

Speaking further, Oyebanji said the entire Ekiti Obas have taken it upon themselves to defend their citizens. “because, the question is if this happened to two Obas, then what is the fate of the subjects. So, they are putting in place structures to defend their people.”

“And I also plead with Afenifere that they should be united, so that they can work together, it is only in unison that this organization can achieve its vision as espoused by the founding fathers. So, we need a united front, collectively, we can combat this menace that is steering us in the face.

“I am grateful to Baba Fasoranti for sending this delegation of eminent leaders to commiserate with us. This speaks to the unity of our people. Afenifere had foreseen situation like this long ago, and that is why you have been clamouring for restructuring. Those opposed to the call then, have now joined Afenifere in championing restructuring, state or multi-level policing, among others. We need Afenifere to keep speaking objectively.

On calls on southwest governors be united on the issue of security, Oyebanji said: “It will interest you, sirs, to know that all the governors of the southwest states, are united on this matter of security. And we are collaborating on the issue. We have a common position, the demise of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) slowed things down. We feel it would be proper to accord him the respect, and continue the process after his burial.”

Earlier while condoling the governor, the Afenifere leaders, who lamented the killing of the obas and abduction of school children, called for the restructuring of the country to tackle security and other challenges.

The Afenifere leaders affirmed the need to strengthen the South West Security Network codenamed Amotekun with necessary ammunition that would make the officers effective in tackling all forms of security infiltration into the region.

They expressed the group’s appreciation to Governor Oyebanji and commended the various steps he had taken to tackle the security challenges in the state and urged him to do more to protect the people.

They also called for an urgent review of the Constitution which they opined had become obsolete looking at the realities of the present situation.

Also at the meeting were the Deputy Governor,  Chief (Mrs) Monisade Afuye, APC Chairman in the State, Barr. Paul Omotoso, Special Adviser to the Governor on Political and Inter-Party Affairs, Chief Jide Awe; Special Adviser to the Governor on Media, Mr Yinka Oyebode and Special Adviser on Governance, Hon Odunayo Ayeni.

*RCCG  commiserates with Oyebanji, Ekiti over the killing of two traditional rulers 

Also, the leadership of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) has commiserated with the Government and people of Ekiti State over recent attacks that led to the killing of two monarchs and the abduction of some school pupils in the state.

Governor Oyebanji receiving a delegation from the church, led by the Pastor in charge of RCCG Region 25, Pastor Tunde Abdullahi

A delegation from the church, led by the Pastor in charge of RCCG Region 25, Pastor Tunde Abdullahi, delivered the condolence message during a visit to the Governor’s office in Ado-Ekiti on Monday.

Other members of the delegation include the Pastors in charge of Region 22 and Region 39, Pastors Jimi Ajibade and Pastor Joseph Olagbadegun as well as Pastor Tunde Adelusi.

In the condolence letter signed by the Continental Overseer, RCCG Continent 3, Pastor Funso Odesola, the Church condemned the gruesome killing of the two traditional rulers and the abduction of some school pupils  (now freed)  and restated their commitment to supporting the state with prayers.

“We stand united in condemning such acts of violence and advocating for justice to prevail. The tragic loss of these monarchs underscores the urgent need for enhanced security measures and concerted efforts to foster peace and stability within our communities.

“Be rest assured of our continued prayers for your state and the country at large” the letter stated.

Responding, Governor Oyebanji who hailed the church for the visit, expressed his profound gratitude to the General Overseer, Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye, for his demonstrated love and concern for the people of the state, following the sad incidents.

The Governor said he was further encouraged by Pastor Adeboye’s prayers for the state and the visit of the Church delegation.

Stressing the need to arrest the ugly trend of insecurity in the country, Governor Oyebanji urged religious leaders to unite in prayer for Nigeria to overcome her security challenges and work towards a safer and more harmonious future.

The Governor called on people of faith to discourage any form of criminality and continue to pray for the peace, unity and safety of the state and the country at large.

He assured them that the government would continue to do its best to protect the lives and property of the citizens.

While highlighting government efforts in enhancing the security of the state, Oyebanji charged the people to remain vigilant and report every suspicious activities in their community promptly. He urged church leaders to encourage their congregations to notify relevant authorities that never they notice a suspicious movement or activities.

“Let me express the gratitude and appreciation of the Ekiti State government and citizens to Pastor Adeboye and leadership of RCCG for standing with us at this very tough moment, I am extremely grateful to him.

“And I ‘m appealing to our fathers of faith to please tell our people to be vigilant and report any suspicious movement in their neighborhood. They should just expose it because most of these criminals live around us”. The Governor said.

Earlier in his remarks, the pastor in-charge of Ekiti State, Pastor Tunde Abdullahi, who spoke on behalf of the General Overseer, Pastor Enoch Adeboye said the purpose of their visit was to sympathize with the government over the killing of two traditional rulers and the abduction of the school children and their teachers.

Pastor Abdulahi said the incident did not mean that God had forsaken the people but that God had a purpose for everything.

While commending the Governor for his good governance, the Pastor charged the Governor to remain steadfast and resolute in the face of the challenging situation.

Also at the meeting were the Head of Service, Engr Sunday Komolafe, Commissioner for Agriculture and Food Security, Mr. Ebenezer Boluwade, Special Adviser, OTSD, Dr Ekundayo John, Special Adviser Media, Mr. Yinka Oyebode and Director General Community Communications, Mrs Mary Oso  Omotoso.