Drama, accusations as court grants Ilaro Poly SUG president bail
• NANS criticises police, management’s decision
Though the Students’ Union president of the Federal Polytechnic, Ilaro, Ogun State, Adegboye Olatunji, who was arrested for alleged involvement in cultism, has been granted bail, some students have accused the landlord association in the community of plotting the incident.
The students, who insisted the whole incident was a conspiracy, did not spare even the police and management of the institution.
Olatunji, a Higher National Diploma II student of Banking and Finance, who was elected the union’s president in December 2019, was allegedly caught in the bush at Gbogidi area of Ilaro in the regalia of the Neo Black Movement, popularly called Black Axe, alongside one other student.
However, a Magistrate Court in Ifo area granted him bail on Monday.
It was gathered that the students’ parliament impeached him on Monday and appointed a new president after the news of his arrest broke out.
The school also suspended him and warned the students of the institution not to be involved in any activity related to the president.
Following his arrest and detention, the Southwest Zone of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) threatened to embark on a statewide protest if the police did not charge Olatunji to court.
They alleged that the police and the management of the polytechnic were making efforts to tarnish the image of the SUG President for issues best known to them.
The Ogun Police Command, in a swift reaction, warned the students not to embark on the planned protest, as anybody caught would face the full weight of the law.
While the students were insisting on massive protest if nothing is done, the embattled students leader regained freedom last Monday.
Meanwhile, some members of NANS and the students of the institution have countered the allegation levelled against Olatunji, which portrayed him as a cultist.
In defending Olatunji, the students claimed it is absurd for the school to have suspended, impeached and replaced him in less than 48hours when he has not been found guilty in the court.
According to them, there are series of questions asked but answers are yet to be provided. Why did the police division at Ilaro deny the Comrade of fair hearing? Why did the rector give mandate that nobody should be allowed to have access to him? Even the legislative speaker who checked on him was also detained with order from the rector, who also accused him of being a cultist. Why did they spray substance on his face and force the regalia on him then make the public believed they caught him on regalia?
They alleged that at the point of arrest one of the vigilantes said to the SUG president, “you are the only one who knows how to defend the inflation in house rent.”
Prior to the incident, Olatunji was said to have defended the interest of students in the area of exorbitant house rent in the community. The students said he had a meeting with landlord association appealing to them to reduce the inflated house rent. “What if the vigilante was an angry landlord that does not support his opinion on the issue?” A student queried.
One of the students who pleaded anonymity said: “The commissioner of Police (CP) was with the rector of the school a week before the incident. The CP chose Ilaro Polytechnic as a violence free institution, this same CP was the one that claimed that our comrade had confessed being a cultist to him. Let them give us a proof where he uttered the confession.”
Another student who identified himself as Tolulope, said, “Let’s think about this, almost 50 cultists were said to be there. Meanwhile, report has it that they have been seen in that bush several times having meeting, but they usually disrupt their meetings and send them away. But on that fateful day, they decided to invite vigilante and police, and the person who should have millions of reasons to run faster than anybody was one of the only two that was caught. The question is, were there just one police and one vigilante there? How come they were able to arrest just two people?
“Also they alleged he is the number one of the deadly group, then the question to be asked here is why did his member also leave their number one citizen?
Imagine a suspect in the police custody since last two weeks and they did not want to charge the case to court neither do they want to make proper investigation from him and the vigilantes. The commissioner of police refuses to charge the duo to court while 10 lawyers are on ground to represent our president in court.”