Political parties since pre- 1999 election had engaged in social killings of either their member or opposition, predictably, for political office or to silence the voice of opposition or cover tracks of their loots.
After the exit of military in 1999, the nation is further plagued with increasing killings of politicians and members of their family(s) even when the electorates are clearly becoming poorer with decayed social infrastructures and inadequate power which has unexpectedly fallen below pre-1999 level.
To worsen the situation, the economy is persistently plagued with increasing unemployment and oppressive inflation rates which constrained output and deepened poverty. However, these challenges had occurred when Nigeria earned more income than any time in the history of Nigeria.
Where did all the money go to, one may ask? The sprawling estates in choice locations and bloated overseas and domestic bank accounts of the erstwhile political office holders provided the answer. Regrettably, the electorates witness unfulfilled promises to provide surplus power, portable water, construct roads, medical centres and provide schools at every nook and cranny of the country.
When Nigeria president, Muhammaduu Buhari, through his All Progressive Congress Party (APC) defeated the incumbent president, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan of (PDP) in 2015, he vowed to fight corruption in the country and taking steps to improving transparency in government. Hence, he introduced “whistle blowing” as an anti-corruption programme that encourages people to voluntarily disclose information about fraud, bribery, looted government funds, financial misconducts, government assets and any other form of corruption. Three months after its introduction, Nigeria government has received 2351 tips and by February, 2017 Nigeria government discovered $9.8 million dollars kept away by government officials.
In view of the above, political assassination became an instrument of settling political scores in Nigeria. Although, some of the killings were documented as ordinary murder but evidences showed that they were political killings. Unfortunately, government and police actions to stem the ugly tide and find the killers were insufficient and ineffective. To mention only few, we have on records the assassination of chief Bola Ige (AD), Harry Marshall(ANPP), Eng. Funsho Williams (PDP), Dipo Dina (AC), Odunayo Omobolanle Olagbaju (ADP). More than fifty politicians have been killed since this fourth republic in Nigeria and the riddles surrounding their deaths remained unsolved till today.
In the light of the incidents of political killing in the country, a notable chief of Omi-Adio extract of Ido local government of Ibadan in Oyo state but based in Lagos at Olusosun, in person of Alhaji Lasisi Osuolale Olaleye was cold bloodedly murdered by a gang of four assailants at 11:00 pm hour of 22nd September, 2016. He was formerly a member of People’s Democratic Party of Nigeria (PDP) but was later convinced by the progressive programs of “All Progressive Congress” party lead by Muhammadu Buhari. Defections from People’s Democratic Party of Nigeria (PDP) to All Progressive Congress (APC) of people like Alhaji Osuolale Lasisi made it possible across the country to defeat the incumbent president and Muhammadu Buhari won 2015 presidential election.
Late Alhaji Lasisi Osuolale Olaleye was murdered and his associate also became victim of unending revenge of exposing the rots in PDP by the then government of the day to the present government of president Muhammadu Buhari. This case could be likened to the murder of Barnabas Igwe, the chairman of the Anambra state branch of the Nigeria Bar Association and his wife Abigail Amaka Igwe who were ambushed in their car and brutally murdered in Onisha in September, 2002. Barnabas has been an open critic of the then Anambra state Governor Chinwoke Mbadinuju and had called for his resignation due to his failure to pay government workers for several months.
In a similar vein, Alhaji Lasisi Osuolale Olaleye has been murdered but the revenge continues in the killing of his friend, late Alhaji Sulaimon Shodimu who was perceived to be holding documents and facts concerning corrupt practices of the past administration at Ido Local government of Oyo state, Nigeria.
More so, efforts to assassinate his son Abdullateef Ololade who was being groomed for politics by his late father, also assumed to have similar documents and evidences to be blown open as a revenge of his father’s death is also perceived. However, the escape of Abdullateef Ololade Olaleye from the country with his wife forestall Olusosun residence waking-up to hear the death of the politician’s son again.
In conclusion, it’s unfortunate that in a country where its political elites should be concerned about our weak industrial base, high rate of unemployment and deepened poverty, they are using these unemployed youths as political thugs in eliminating each other, wiping each other’s family in order to attain political office to amass wealth. Invariably, the future of the country is bleak in the hands of politicians of this generation.
By: Femi Amosun