By Ademola Atobaba in Ado-Ekiti
Members of a coalition of civil society groups has marched on the streets of Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, to protest alleged impunity, lawlessness, corruption and anti-people policies of the Ayo Fayose administration.
The placard-carrying protesters accused Fayose of inflicting suffering on the people and failing to run a transparent and accountable government.
They slammed the lawmakers for lying that the Department of State Services (DSS) invaded the House of Assembly, saying they have since discovered that there was no invasion.
The protesters also declared their support for the anti-corruption crusade of President Muhammadu Buhari, insisting that all those who stole the nation’s wealth must be punished.
They called for Fayose’s probe over the Ekitigate scandal and alleged ownership of property in Abuja, Ghana, South Africa and Dubai while workers and pensioners are being owed arrears of salaries and benefits.
Some of their placards read: “Promoters of treason must pay for their crimes,” “Fayose, when are you going to publicise your assets?,” “Stop demolishing traders’ shops in our state,” “There is nothing like DSS invasion of Assembly,” “Fayose has destroyed Ekiti legacy of honour and integrity,” “Stop using Ekiti youths as thugs while your children enjoy abroad,” “Fayose must explain how he collected INEC soft copies to win election,” “It is wrong for primary/secondary schools to pay tax,” among others.
Groups which participated include Coalition of South-west Youths, Ekiti Youth Vanguard, Omoluabi Grassroots Coalition, Coalition of Progressives, Ekiti Progressive Women Alliance and Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP).
The protest, which started at Okeyinmi at 9.04 am, ended at the Ojumose Roundabout, where protest leaders addressed reporters.
They caused a traffic snarl in the area with policemen diverting vehicles to alternative routes.
One of the protest leaders, Adedamola Temitayo of Ekiti Movement for Progress, said Fayose must account for the N2.4 billion Ecological funds allegedly mismanaged under his watch.
He said Ekiti people are not happy with the government being run by Fayose which he said is no longer accountable to the people.
Coordinator of Movement Against Corrupt Leaders Yomi Oso insisted that the lawmakers who assaulted some judges must not be spared.
Oso urged the appropriate authorities to try Fayose and some of his aides for alleged crimes against the constitution, adding that nobody is above the law.
Mrs. Dunni Alabi of Ekiti Progressives Women Alliance said the truth has come to light on the purported abduction of four lawmakers claiming that three of them-Badejo Anifowose, Sina Animasaun and Musa Arogundade are hiding in Fayose’s house in Afao-Ekiti.
She said the government approached the Federal High Court to compel the release of Afolabi Akanni, who is the only lawmaker held by DSS. Mrs. Alabi described the alleged action as “deceit of the highest order”.
Ade Ogidan, who spoke on behalf of Okada Riders, said members of his association had realised that the governor is deceiving the people.
The state CNPP spokesman, Ayo Adelabu, lambasted the lawmakers for being “partners in crime” in the alleged impunity and constitutional breaches in the state.
Damilare Bewaji of the Coalition of Progressive Youths said: “We are opposed to imposition of taxes everywhere, particularly on pupils when their parents are also paying.