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Demola Olarewaju @DemolaRewaju
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“Those who know the Blue-Eared Glossy Starling Bird should mourn with Indigo Dye;
Those who know the Carmine Bee-Eater should mourn with Camwood;
Those who know the Cow Egret should mourn with White Chalk.”

This is how the death of Bola Ige was announced on some Radio stations.
What I posted is a translation, what was announced was in Yoruba:

“Eni ba mo agbe k’o sun’kun aro;
Eni ba mo aluko k’o sun’kun osun;
Eni ba mo lekeleke k’o sun’kun efun”.

The death of Bola Ige is undoubtedly the last ethnically tragic event that happened to the Yorubas.
Of all the politicians who lived after Awolowo, none was more colourful (perhaps even more than Awo himself) and none was as charismatic as Bola Ige.

Unfortunately for him, he also stirred deep envy from his friends and deep hatred from those who chose to be his enemies.
Ige’s most outstanding quality in the eyes of many was his oratory prowess (personally, I believe it was his ability to sum up an issue conclusively without belabouring the point).

This oratory skill fetched him admirers but also brought him haters from within and without.
I had a hearty laugh recently when some folks on here who perhaps were just coming into the knowledge of History described Uncle Bola as a calm leader who never stirred up divisions.

Anyone who knew of Ige knew 2 things: his tongue was caustic and he never suffered fools gladly.
For a few years, I’ve celebrated Ige on this day since he died in 2001 - although the man himself would have used the word “apotheosised” or “transited” to describe it - and I’m not bored doing it but for the sake of readers, I felt this year we can explore an aspect in detail.
The final years of Ige - especially the period from 1999 until 2001 when he died were his final act and I want to focus more on that tonight.

But first we look briefly at the previous acts...

Ige was born in Kaduna in September of 1930 and began to know politics from 1940.
Among the politicians who made the first impression on the mind of the young Ige was Herbert Macaulay and in his teenage years, Nnamdi Azikiwe whom Ige admired for a long time before becoming a follower of Awolowo.

Hausa was his first language and he ended up able to speak many.
Ige was a fluent speaker of Hausa, Yoruba, Igbo, English and Latin - those who knew him said he and his wife, Atinuke Ige used to speak Latin to each other when others were present but they wanted to pass an exclusive message.

Politically, Ige identified fully with Awolowo.
To understand Ige’s life and politics, one must understand a bit about Awolowo and to understand the last years of Ige’s life, one must understand the Awoists.

Awolowo was the Yoruba Leader who solidified the legend of Oduduwa as the progenitor of the race and rode on it.
Awo’s first political group was the Egbe Omo Oduduwa which he used to rally the Yoruba race into one political unit under the political party, the Action Group.

Ige at 24 became the National Publicity Secretary of the AG - an uncommon feat even at that time.
Through the period of Awolowo’s travails in the First Republic, Ige and many others stood beside him especially during the Akintola insurrection within the party and also during the treasonable felony case against Awo.

By 1979, Ige wanted to be the Governor of the old Oyo State.
Awolowo however had a friend and contemporary - Archdeacon Emmanuel Alayande who had been the chaplain of the AG in the First Republic and deferred to Awo despite being older than him by a couple of months.

Alayande in fact was the one who encouraged Awo when he almost gave up.
People these days often assume the homogeneity of ethnicities but in my historical findings, I see that most united ethnicities today in Nigeria were not so - even as recently as 100 years ago.

And so it was with the Yorubas - they were divided by tribe before the time of Awo.
Trying to unite them politically, Awo formed the Egbe as mentioned earlier but by the third meeting, he was cursing the Yoruba divisions that made many other tribes especially the Ibadans and the Oyos not to turn up - but Alayande encouraged him and a strange thing happened.
The crowd at the next meeting was so much that the meeting venue had to change during the course of it.

Awo, being a mystic, concluded that Alayande had good charm for crowds and let him preside over that meeting - the only person who ever got such privilege while Awo was alive.
By 1979, Awolowo wanted Alayande to be the Governor of Oyo State but Ige also wanted to be Governor and was undoubtedly more popular than Alayande.

Awo wanted to impose but Ige suppprters insisted on primaries which Ige won easily and which some say was conducted three times.
In any case: Ige won but went out of his way to appease Alayande and gave him a position in the Oyo State Government.

I recount this story because it bears impact on the particular saga I want to dwell on about Ige tonight.

The Buhari coup of 1983 ended that Second Republic.
If two people were considered successors to Awo’s political legacy, it was Ige and anyone else - usually Lateef Jakande.

But Jakande had put himself out of running for several reasons, of which one is most prominent: he had served under Abacha and did not resign when asked to.
I only just came across factual materials recently which point to the fact that two incidents may also have ruled Jakande out of contention with Awo.

Firstly is that when Jakande was jailed by Buhari in 1983, he had written a letter to Awolowo demanding his entitlement be paid.
Jakande was a shareholder in ANN which published the Tribune titles of which he had been MD and Editor in Chief before he became the Governor of Lagos.

While in jail, Awo paid his wife a stipend but Jakande wrote to ask that his share value be paid instead - Awo was pissed.
The second matter existed in the realm of rumour but I recently read Prof. Lai Olurode’s biography of Jakande and he asserts that Jakande also legally denied Awo the C of O of some hectares of land in Maroko area of that time which in our time is now part of Victoria Island.
Long story short: Jakande was out and Ige was sort of the disputed heir of Awolowo.

But Ige has enemies within.

Pa Ajasin who was also close to Awo in age became the leader of Afenifere and meetings moved from Awo’s Ikenne home to Owo where Ajasin was from.
Ajasin’s emergence had some resistance from Awo’s Ijebu backers on one hand - and then certain elements within the group who wanted Mama HID Awolowo to become the leader.

Ebenezer Babatope was one of the latter - so this was no small tussle, the former were also formidable.
Ajasin with his calm nature and wisdom managed to unite the group to support first Olu Falae for President and then later MKO Abiola after he accepted the Awolowo Creed that consisted of True Federalism, Welfarism, Dignity of Humanity etc.

After Ajasin died, another tussle came.
This time, the Ijebu went all out and Pa Abraham Adesanya became the Leader of Afenifere but a new position was created to accommodate Bola Ige - Deputy Leader.

In charisma though, Ige outshone Adesanya and also had powerful enemies who were very close to Adesanya.
This period was the period of the struggle against the military and Ige with his weekly column in the Sunday Tribune was able to push himself into prominence such that his views were often considered the views of the Afenifere and he was seen as its representative.
Some say that for a while, Ige did not attend meetings in Adesanya’s Ijebu-Igbo home because he felt he should have been made Leader but he was eventually persuaded and became a strong rallying point on his own.

But his enemies were never convinced and they fought him always.
When Ige took the position of Siddon Look under IBB’s transition and called both parties “two sides of a coin”, Afenifere followed suit.

When Ige rejected the Abacha transition and described the five parties as “the five fingers of a leprous hand”, Afenifere followed suit.
Ige was not only an excellent orator, he was a ‘phrasemaker’ as one journalist described him.

Stanley Macebuh of the Guardian wrote the beautiful quote in my twitter bio to describe Ige and called him “Cicero” after the Roman orator - but Ige saw himself more like Demosthenes.
By the time Abacha died in 1998, Ige had become the foremost anti-Abacha voice among politicians as Gani was foremost among Activists.

The anti-Abacha Movement was largely domiciled in the South and especially the South-West but Ige prominently moved to change this.
Ige along with Alex Ekwueme and seven others - Abubakar Rimi, Sule Lamido, Jerry Gana, Iyorchia Ayu, Francis Ellah and some others I can’t recall right now but nine in total started to meet on how to present a national front against Abacha’s self-succession bid.
At the very first meeting, Ige is said to have openly challenged Abubakar Rimi on the silence of the North all along on Abacha’s misrule - and I personally heard this from my Leader, Sule Lamido.

Knowing Cicero and Dan Sumaila - two orators of passion, I can imagine how it went.
Lamido was the one who calmed Abubakar Rimi down and both men convened a meeting of representatives from all Northern states to publicly issue a reprimand to Abacha.

As appreciation for their troubles, Both Lamido and Rimi were jailed by Abacha on the day the G34 was formed.
Ironically, G34 should have been G36 because it had one representative each from all the states with Lamido representing Jigawa and Dan Sumaila representing Kano - they were in jail but the G34 statement had 36 names including theirs but only 34 attendees and signatories.
As though the God of Creation referenced in the second stanza of the national anthem was waiting for this national coalition, Abacha died about a month after their letter to him was made public.

Ige was in detention by this time - “prisoner of war” as Col. Ahmed Usman called him
Ahmed Usman was then the Military Administrator of Oyo and Ige had led a protest on May Day (or May 2nd) of 1998 against Abacha alongside Lam Adeshina, Ola Oni and co who were also detained.

They were in detention when Abacha died and Abdulsalami Abubakar came in and freed them.
(Lol, I really should start these threads earlier - one hour gone and not yet halfway through but we’ll finish this tonight to honour Ige’s memory on the exact day they took his life seventeen years ago in 2001.)
Afenifere of which Ige was Deputy Leader took the name Peoples Consultative Forum as political activities began under Abubakar following Abiola’s very convenient death and Ige was the quasi-leader of this political group as well as being a member of the G34 alliance.
To make the G34 into a political party, various associations were invited and the PCF delegation comprised of Bola Ige, Olu Falae, Ayo Adebanjo, Sir Lanihun Ajayi, Senator Francis Okpozo, Segun Osoba and Ayo Opadokun.

Prominent from the PDM Movement was a certain Atiku Abubakar.
These groups eventually became the People’s Democratic Party with Bola Ige mandates to write the constitution of the party - very many say he did, a few say he did not.

But PCF soon left the PDP and a few Ige detractors say it was because of something that happened frequently.
The slot of Presidential Flagbearer has been tactically conceded to the SW to appease the zone over the death of Abiola.

At those formational meetings, Ige never hid his ambition but Rimi was fond of calling Olu Falae “Mr. President” and Ige felt his aspiration threatened.
At a meeting soon afterwards while Pa Adesanya and Olu Falae were abroad - Ige led the PCF out of PDP and they announced a new party with Umaru Shinkafi and other Northerners where again Ige was drafted to write the constitution.

Ige had struck a deal for President with Shinkafi
By this time, the Atiku group had drafted Obasanjo into the PDP (story for another day) but “Abacha politicians” joined the APP and so the PCF has to pull out and form its own party on the eve of the INEC deadline - the Alliance for Democracy, AD.
30 political parties or associations were tentatively registered by INEC but the first hurdle to cross was that of national spread: only parties that won LGA election seats in all parts of Nigeria would eventually be registered.

Only PDP and APP made it but 3 were registered.
The transition would have been jeopardised if AD as the party of the SW was denied registration - and so INEC allowed them to scale through with Rtd. Justice Ephraim Akpata citing a certain proviso.

With AD, Ige felt confident he would pick the presidential ticket, but fate...
Rather than resort to democratic primaries to choose the presidential candidate, the AD used the age-long conclave of Awo’s time and Ige who had denounced such practice before accepted it this time, confident of victory.

Ige even used the same process to impose in Oyo and Osun.
Ige almost singlehandedly chose Lam Adesina and Bisi Akande as the AD gubernatorial candidates in Oyo and Osun respectively, Lagos was the only place where actual primaries held between Bola Tinubu and Funso Williams.

Williams won, but manipulation happened - another day’s story
The conclave to elect the AD flagbearer (as well as senatorial candidates in the SW) was made up of 23: all 6 SW Gov-elects who had won elections but were yet to be sworn in and several others whom I will mention as we go on.

3 presidential aspirants emerged but 1 dropped out.
Bola Ige, Olu Falae and Tunji Otegbeye who dropped out protesting that the one million Naira nomination fee was too high 🤦🏽‍♂️🤦🏽‍♂️

Allegedly, Ige’s one million was given to him by Arisekola Alao who later confirmed it to sources but the story was also used against Ige.
The Afenifere justified this conclave as an “electoral college” but Ige in his column of March 3, 1996 had condemned even electoral colleges.

So why did he participate in this one?

I can only guess that he felt confident of the outcome but he underestimated his enemies.
Afenifere inner caucus had also met before this time to select conclave members - Falae had been asked to go out of that preliminary meeting being not an inner caucus member.

Ige was also asked to leave as an aspirant but he refused as Deputy Leader, so the process seemed fair.
Once the selection was concluded though, Ige flew out of the country - a terrible mistake of overconfidence which many of his allies tried to stop him from making but Ige was already focused on the coming electoral battle and needed finance which he flew or of Nigeria to source.
A few reliable sources say he met with a very prominent and elderly Yoruba top Banker in London during this time in London.

And already, many groups were already pushing for an Ige Presidency - so he felt really confident but underestimated the envy within the Afenifere.
This Envy was prompted by several things - one of them was a dream Ige claimed to have had while in detention under Abacha in Makurdi Prison where he said Awolowo appeared to him in a trance and told him that Oduduwa wanted him to lead the Yorubas to prominence.
If Bola Ige said he had a dream, I cannot doubt it for even a second.

But I do query the wisdom behind sharing this detail with anybody - of course he only told a few people, mainly some Yoruba editors but the elders say “walls have ears” and everyone soon knew about it.
Pa Ayo Adebanjo began to ask derisively if Ife wanted Adesanya to die so that he could take over leadership as per the dream he had.

And here, let me say a word about Pa Adebanjo and others who ‘hate’ Ige so much (deliberate use of the present continuous tense).
If there were two people in this world that were close to Awo and wanted nothing else out of life than to be his followers, it was Chief Ayo Adebanjo and Sir Laniwun Ajayi. Ige was so close to Awo, he used to eat his lunch before Baba even got to the table but he had ambitions.
Adebanjo and Ajayi had no ambitions - never even contested for public office like so many others but would surely have been Ministers if Awo ever became President.

Awo specifically requested both men to bring their portraits to hang on his wall in his Efunyela Court home.
While Ige and others were Governors and even Adesanya and Odebiyi were Senators, Adebanjo and Ajayi kept company with Awo whenever he was lonely and many say they used such periods to fill him up with embellished gists against the Governors who didn’t like them also.
Both men were derisively called “Members from the Park Lane Constituency” which is the street on which Awo lived in Apapa in Lagos and where they resumed daily.

As said, only two of them and immediate family members had single portraits in Awo’s home, others had only group pixes
This is one of such pixes - the UPN Governors of the Second Republic, from left:

Ambrose Alli (father of our own @afalli), Pa Ajasin, Awo himself, Bisi Onabanjo, Lateef Jakande and the young but remarkable and distinguished Uncle Bola Ige.
To make things worse for some like Ige and easier for his enemies, Adebanjo and Ajayi were Ijebus and conversed freely with Awo in that dialect.

When Awo died, Adebanjo and Ajayi along with Abraham Adesanya and Pa Solanke Onasanya to become what Ige described as “The Ijebu 4”
I still read an interview of his this year in which Pa Adebanjo, at about 90 years in Age and respected, described Ige with words that sounded like he was still fighting him.

Anyway, back to the D’Rovans Hotel conclave of January 27, 1999 - or let’s go to Kaduna briefly...
Ige is said to have hosted an AD caucus meeting in Kaduna where his wife was then stationed as a Judge of the Federal Court of Appeal and while in the house, he called Adebanjo, Ajayi and Ganiyu Dawodu of Lagos into an inner room where he told them that he wanted to be President.
It is said that Fasanmi was in the house at that time but because he and Ige were so close, Ige never formally told him of his aspiration.

Maybe this also worked against him cos Fasanmi later said that when he and those other three were driving back to Lagos, they said something
“Se enu a ka Bola sha?” - Meaning that they felt Bola Ige would not be controllable.

When Adebanjo was told that Fasanmi leaked this, Adebanjo also reported that on the same journey, Fasanmi also had said that “Ige’s mouth would never allow him to be President”.

Ige had enemies
Folks who called Ige before the conclave to appeal to him not to travel to London said he told them that out of the 23 votes available, he would get 15 or 18.

Even Pa Adesanya told Ige not to travel as it would look like arrogance but Ige travelled.

Ige got 9 votes.
Between last December and today, I’ve been privileged to read abridged versions of the minutes of that conclave of January 27 1999 at D’Rovans Hotel but still can’t be accurate on who didn’t vote Ige.

Justice Adewale Thompson, an Ige ally administered the oath to all 23 men.
This Adewale Thompson was an open mystic who believed in so many strange ideas of the esoteric and belonged to about sixteen Yoruba cults.

Pa Adesanya gave opening remarks and Fasanmi was to be the returning officer. Everyone however voted secretly so nobody knew how they voted.
Interestingly, when Fasanmi, Ige’s friend, was to announce the result, he said “I am particularly delighted to inform Nigerians that Chief Olu Falae has emerged as the presidential flagbearer of the AD.”

“Particularly delighted”?

And added that nobody can say he’s not satisfied
He then further explained that Falae was chosen because he would be acceptable to the North and because he was less controversial - smelling talk that nobody asked for, with all due respect to Pa Fasanmi.

Wasn’t Ige controversial because of this same cause they all professed?
If Ige was not liked in the North (which was untrue - Shinkafi was still working with him at this time), wasn’t it because of the Afenifere cause?

And funnily, when the time to campaign came, Ige was chosen to lead campaigns in the same North they said didn’t like him.
Someone who phoned Ige to inform him of the outcome said his first reaction was that “This is like the second fall of man” - referring to the Edenic episode.

Immediately Falae was announced, all Hell let loose, things fell apart and the centre in Yorubaland never held since then
Justice Adewale Thompson who administered the oath of secrecy was the first to break it by reacting in his newspaper column that people were calling him and rejecting the choice of Olu Falae and calling for Bola Ige. That those who chose Falae don’t know what they’re starting.
He began publicly saying that AD would lose to Obasanjo and when the rumour came out that Arisekola Alao who had supported Abacha had given Ige 10m (he actually gave him 1m), Thompson went quite livid and insulted the rumourmongers as part of the schemers against Ige.
Before I describe the reaction of Ige himself, let me say those we conclude actually voted for him because they had stood up at the meeting to express preference for Ige:

Lam Adesina, Michael Koleosho, Mojisoluwa Akinfenwa, Emmanuel Alayande, Chief Bodunde of Kogi and Thompson.
Bisi Akande also voted Ige.

Osoba claims he voted Ige but for years refused to disclose who he voted for. Some say the Ijebu 4 pressured him to vote Falae.

Niyi Adebayo also said he voted Ige.

The Ondo/Ekiti axis though may likely not have voted against Falae, an Akure man.
Tinubu point-blank said he didn’t vote Ige because Ige had supported Funso Williams.

Meanwhile, the Ganiyu Dawodu who had told Ige to support Funso Williams also voted against Ige at the conclave.

But Ige publicly claimed to have no ill-feelings over the outcome.
In his column of March 7, 1999, he wrote:

“Now I think I better disclose my reaction to what happened at Ibadan and why I have not lost one second’s sleep on what my colleagues contrived. I was not surprised because I had half expected it.”

Contd.
“I am proud to say that I never spoke to any one of those people constituted by Sen. Adesanya. I did not insult myself or members of the panel by lobbying any of them or those who constituted the panel. My attitude was and is: whatever they do shall find me unmoved and unafraid.”
But Ige continued to write in the same column afterwards about how the “enemies within are more subtle yet more deadly” than the enemies without.

Many of us who loved Ige rejected Falae - I wasn’t old enough to vote but I campaigned for Obasanjo in 1999 to everyone I knew.
Obasanjo won eventually and Falae lost.

One of the points raised in favour of Falae ahead of Ige was that Falae had been Minister under IBB and Ige had only served as Governor at state level.

So when Obasanjo invited Bola Ige to serve as a Minister, he took it - another mistake
I think Ige should either have quit Afenifere totally or have swallowed the bitter pill and moved on.

We loved him then and adore him still - but we also learn.

Ige was screened by the Senate along with over 40 others and was the first man ever to be asked to “bow and go”.
He was also the only man in that ministerial list to be asked to merely take a bow to the Senate and go.

Appointed as Minister of Power and Steel, Ige promised to “turn stone into bread” - but NEPA is the most complex public infrastructure problem in Nigeria, I believe.
Those who disliked Ige in the Afenifere continued to refer to how Falae defeated him as payback for how he also went against Alayande in 79 - not minding that same Alayande definitely voted Ige at the conclave.

Alayande and Thompson were so pissed with Afenifere afterwards.
Both men eventually pulled out to form the “Egbe Igbimo Agba Yoruba” - Yoruba Council of Elders; to rival Afenifere - the centre has never held since then.

Younger elements whom the other elders in Afenifere derided but Ige courted tried quite hard to mediate without success.
You had the likes of Dare Babarinsa, Dayo Adeyeye, Funmi Afuye from Idile, Akinyemi Onigbinde from Heritage, our own Jimi Agbaje and Gbenga Daniel from NG and so many other groups come together under a coalition called Alajobi (consanguinity) to mediate but it never worked.
Ige continued to talk of a political realignment that would soon come and Obasanjo was all too happy to exploit the cleavage in the SW to win support from his home-base where he had lost woefully in 1999.

Ige was later moved to the Ministry of Justice as Attorney-General.
His rivals kept pointing to him as the brain behind YCE but he never identified with the group for once - although Thompson made it clear that the D’Rovans saga was uppermost in his mind with YCE.

Ige haters began comparing him to Akintola - and there were a few similarities:
Ige had the ability to make good friends with people from other ethnicities just like Akintola and both men also had not only the gift of garb, but also of languages.

Adesanya regretfully made such suggestions in a newspaper interview I read at the time also.
Unfortunately for Ige, trouble was brewing back in Osun where Iyiola Omisore had wanted to be Governor under the Abacha transition and had built structures but had been asked to become deputy to Baba Akande.

He and Akande has fallen out and Ige was strongly behind Akande.
Ige went to Ife for a chieftaincy conferment on Stella Obasanjo in 2001, few weeks before his death and Omisore allegedly arranged for him to be humiliated.

His cap was taken off by thugs and when it was brought back, Ige put it on straightaway.

Some say it was a mistake 🤐🤷🏽‍♂️
A prominent Omisore supporter and House of Assembly member representing an Ife Constituency was killed some days after that event - Odunayo Olagbaju.

Omisore then granted an interview that would haunt his political career till death - I read it then in Tempo and was disgusted.
Omisore lambasted Ige and said so much rubbish that later came back to haunt him. Can’t remember the exact quote but it was like

“We removed his cap and he was crying like a baby. Then he insulted me and my fathers - Ah! That would be his last.”

Days after, Ige was murdered.
My dad usually bought daily newspapers everyday back then - Punch on Weekdays and Saturdays, Tempo on Friday, Tribune in Sundays - a vendor usually delivered it to our house.

I went out with an Uncle that morning to buy Christmas chicken when I saw the headline of Punch:
“Ige, Minister, Shot Dead at 74” or something like that.

It was the end of an era but the tributes started pouring in daily in the newspapers - nobody has ever been honoured publicly since then the way Ige was: he was the last of a generation and the times also permitted that.
Every SW state wanted to identify with him, FG had to be involved because he was a serving Minister who had died so gruesomely.

TV stations weren’t too many so Ige was everywhere and Punch ran a daily two-page section for tributes to him and details about his life.
His body lay in state at the National Stadium in Surulere and I attended - KWAM 1 performed a very sorrowful dirge for him.

Ibadan which he had come to love so much also honoured him and everywhere his body went, his enemies in Afenifere were shamed as Ige was celebrated.
They had hoped that the memory of Ige would be like that of Akintola, a traitor to the Yoruba cause.

But the crowd in Ibadan chanted one more time as they had many times before at campaigns:

“Ige de, Ige de o, Arole Awolowo, Ige de o”

“Ige has come, Awolowo’s heir has come”.
Wole Soyinka, Ige’s bosom friend delivered a moving tribute and left something poignant:

“The murderers are among us, let no one be in any doubt, they sir aminf is tight eitjin this sombre gathering that honours the passage of a hero. There are the unwitting collaborators...”
“...whose blind politics brought this moment to be, whose primitive notions of conteststions offered up this lamb on a sacrificial platter. Perhaps they are contrite.”

He was referring to the enemies within and it is said that Ige alluded to this shortly before he died.
Again, I only just heard this one:

That two days before Ige died, he had attended the funeral ceremony of Pa Solanke Onasanya and slipped and fell. Some Yoruba mystics interpreted that in a certain way.

Some say Ige when he stood up said “Awon people yi ti pa mi”.
Adewale Thompson, who believed in loony stuff like the lost city of Atlantis being Nigeria - asserted very strongly that until the enemies within had weakened Ige spiritually, the enemies without would never have got him.

Anyway, Omisore was affected and a macabre trial began.
On the night that Ige was killed, sources say that Jelili Adesiyan, known associate of Omisore threw a party in Ode-Omu, he was also arrested.

But the police kept looking for a key witness - Gbenga Adebayo aka Fryo.

Apparently, Festus Keyamo was hiding him for several weeks.
When Keyamo decided to produce Fryo, his testimony had become unbelievable as he kept going back and forth on whether Omisore had discussed killing Bola Ige with him or not and that Keyamo had told him to indict Omisore.

Why Keyamo kept him for long, nobody knows.
I’ve personally met Fryo - twice this year and the last very recently and I can say that I don’t think Omisore killed Bola Ige but I feel he knows something.

Omisore was in detention when Audu Ogbeh as PDP chairman gave Omisore a senatorial slot: who pressured him to do so?
Omisore needed to be kept quiet and he was given a senatorial ticket while still in detention. Audu Ogbeh is in APC now and I hope one day he tells us who put pressure on him to do so.

When PDP fielded Omisore for Gov in 2014, I couldn’t support that ticket, ever.
Not because I felt he was guilty but because of that Tempo interview where he insulted Bola Ige who has now become a deity that some of us will talk about until this generation passes on.

That man taught many of us via his column on Sundays on the definition of true politics.
His column was titled “Uncle Bola’s Column” and he used it to instil the values we now pass on into some of us.

He was fiercely loyal to his party but he never compromised his personal values and principles. He was always clearheaded - even if many of us didn’t understand him.
Prof. Adebayo Williams in his tribute described Ige as “walking the politics of Nigeria with the confidence of a trapeze artist” - his politics in the final days wasn’t really clear to many but Ige knew what he was doing: serving under PDP but still in AD and rallying his base.
A resignation letter he wrote to Obasanjo was released by his friends some weeks after he died and it was like Ige speaking again from beyond the grave: he explained that he was resigning to go and prepare his party to face Obasanjo and defeat him.

But he was killed untimely.
This is the longest thread I’ve ever done on the man and funnily, I had to skip so much - a book by a certain Prof. Wale Adebanwi has so many new details than confirm so much about the intrigues that led to Ige’s death.

And there are lessons from it about enemies and envy.
May the lives of those who have gone on before us continue to guide us in this world until we depart, Amen.

Thanks for reading - four hour thread: I finally outdid myself and I’m tired and hungry.

But thank you if you stayed awake; thank you and Merry Christmas Eve.

👏🏽👏🏽👏🏽
PS: I’ll write that book someday really soon, I know that’s what will follow in the comments now - just leave me and my conscience, don’t guilt us - we will write the book as soon as time permits.

May death not snatch us away from this plane before our time, Amen.
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