NO fewer than ten leaders of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in Ondo State were injured as armed political thugs invaded the party secretariat in Akure, the state capital.
The meeting of the newly-constituted Caretaker Committee of the party was disrupted by the thugs said to be ten in number.
The thugs were allegedly sponsored by a House of Representatives member.
Vanguard gathered that the thugs arrived the party secretariat at about 1:30 pm after overpowering the security guards outside the Secretariat.
The security guards and party members met at the Secretariat were beaten up before they invaded the meeting and inflicted injuries on the leaders.
Speaking with newsmen, a party member who identified himself as Adewale said that the newly inaugurated Caretaker Committee members were holding a special meeting when the political thugs invaded the venue with cudgel, sticks, cutlass and knives, beating and harassing those at the meeting.
He said it took the intervention of the men of the security operatives in the state to restore peace at the SDP office, while five of the suspected thugs were arrested.
Fasua said that “no fewer than 10 suspected hoodlums stormed the State Secretariat of the Party in Akure at about 1:15 pm Friday to disrupt the hitherto peaceful meeting and destroy some parts of the building.
“It took the swift efforts of the Nigerian Police Force and other security agents to restore normalcy, while five of the miscreants were arrested and later confessed that they were sent to stop the meeting.
The SDP spokesman noted that “the state leadership of our dear party condemns this reprobate display in strong terms as it does not portray what the party stands for.
“SDP is notable for its peaceful and diplomatic conducts, thus, will not condone any act that can bring it to disrepute.
“At this moment, we cannot afford to fail the people of Ondo State who have reposed their confidence in the party to give them the most viable candidate for this years October 20 gubernatorial election.
“This is what we are committed to at the moment and we will not allow any egotistical activities of any individual to distract us.
“No member of the party, including Tajudeen Adefisoye is bigger than the party, and should, therefore, not play to the gallery. Whoever that has any grievance whatsoever with the party should address such in tandem with the constitution of the party,”
The SDP, however, said: “We, therefore, use this medium to call on the national leadership of our great party to call Hon. Tajudeen Adefisoye to order and allow the newly-constituted committee to focus on the business of governance.
“We appreciate the Nigerian Police Force and other security agents For their swift response when it matters most and we further seek your continuous supports in sustaining the peace and tranquillity in our dear Sunshine State,” SDP spokesman concluded.
But while reacting to the allegation, Hon Tajudeen Adefisoye denied having hands in the attack and described the allegation as untrue and unfounded.
According to him “Fasua has no power to speak for the party, describing him as a local government Chairmanship candidate in Akure who is not a member of the state Exco of the SDP.
Adefisoye who spoke through his Media Aide, Yemi Fasipe, said: “Adefisoye did not sponsor any attack and would never sponsor one or be involved in any attack.
“You need to address him (Fasua) as a local govt candidate from Akure south. Secondly, the constitution of the caretaker is illegal and the matter is already in court.
“NWC does not have the right to dissolve (SWC) without getting directives from NEC of the party. So the whole thing is illegal and when they go on air and make statements that they are the CTC of the party. It is laughable.
“Somebody that wrote to the DSS for peace to reign in the party, can’t possibly be sponsoring attacks,” the lawmaker insisted.
Adefisoye said he had written the security operatives in the state on the need to foster peace in the state chapter of the SDP.