Alimosho protest: Nothing bad must happen to Aregbesola, kinsmen warn

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On Tuesday, some All Progressives Congress leaders in Ijesaland, Osun State, condemned a group of people in the Alimosho area of Lagos State’s protest against the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, as uncalled for.

A small crowd protested in Ilesa, led by the Chairman of The Osun Progressives, Mr Lowo Adebiyi, who claimed that because Muslims were not buried with coffins, those who carried mocked Aregbesola coffins were only celebrating their own funeral.

Protesters carried placards with inscriptions such as ‘Ogbeni Aregbesola is a patriot,’ ‘Meet Ogbeni Aregbesola and win election,’ and ‘We identify with Aregbesola and celebrate him,’ among others, calling for an end to the minister’s attacks.

Mr Azeez Adesiji, a former Chairman of the Ilesa West Local Government Council, spoke on behalf of the protesters, saying that before Aregbesola, it was difficult for progressives to penetrate the Alimosho area of Lagos.

He went on to say that Aregbesola was the one who used political tactics to help progressives gain traction in the area’s politics and gain followers.

Adesiji stated, “Aregbesola is not a local leader. He is a federal minister holding a very key position and nobody can force him out of the APC. He is the prime mover. Nobody on earth can force him out. Aregbesola is a Muslim, and have you ever seen a staunch Muslim buried in a coffin? Those that carried the coffins only carried their own coffins.

“You will never see a Muslim buried in a coffin. They are carrying their coffins. They are celebrating their own funeral. You would have read in the media how some misguided youths in Lagos, precisely Alimosho, staged a protest and carried political coffins, purported to be of our beloved leader, father, brother, son and associate, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, who is the Minister of Interior.

“As you all know, he began his political career in Alimosho, Lagos under the leadership of the late Dapo Sarumi, where he met Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. In 1991, while Aregbesola was a House of Representatives aspirant, Asiwaju was contesting for the Senate. Areqbesola lost the SDP primary by one vote.

“Asiwaju, who was just cutting his political teeth then, approached him to help with the Alimosho votes in the Lagos West primaries, which he did, enabling him to become the candidate of the SDP and he eventually won the election.

“At the return of civil democratic rule in 1999, Asiwaju, being fully convinced that Aregbesola was the man he needed, asked him to head his governorship campaign. Aregbesola dexterously won him the Alliance for Democracy primary and governorship election against the candidature of the very formidable Chief Funso Williams and opposition of some powerful Afenifere chieftains.

“Aregbesola’s political stock continues to rise beyond Alimosho, covering Lagos State and beyond, culminating in his election as governor of his home state, Osun, where he served two terms. His re-election in 2014, you will recall, was epochal. He contested against a formidable PDP candidate.”