Ekiti: Kidnappers demand 50m ransom as groups ask Oyebanji to sack Amotekun boss over corruption
By Kunle Falae
Suspected armed Fulani men who kidnapped the school principal of Irele Community High School have asked for N50m as ransom.
The kidnappers took away the School principal, Mr Adesina, a nurse and three other teachers on Monday. Kidnapping for ransom has become a common feature in the Irele-Oke Ako Ekiti axis.
The demand is coming as the Nigerian Human Rights Community, NHRC called on the State Governor, His Excellency Abiodun Oyebanji to set up a panel to investigate complaints of corruption against the Amotekun Commander, Joe Akomolafe, a retired Brigadier General.
He was also accused of raiding innocent people and collecting money for them in the guise of bail
An official of the NHRC Mr Taiwo Adeleye said it has written to the state Governor to investigate and sack Komolafe over a string of corruption and scam linked to him if the claims are established to be true.
“No fewer than 10 Amotekun operatives from Ekiti have visited our office in Lagos. They compain that Komolafe is collecting kickbacks from Amotekun operatives and from many Fulani settlements in Ekiti. We want the State Government to probe these grievious allegations.”
They complain that Amotekun cannot perform in a situation where the commander has turned the organisation into a cow to be milked for personal gains
He said the operatives alleged that Komolafe’s corruption affects the effectiveness of soldiers and police operatives in Ekiti State.
“We understand the police and soldiers are effective and are ready to work by Mr Komolafe is frustrating their efforts because of his corruption and ineptitude.”
The NHRC in the petition said Komolafe recently asked each Local Government Amotekun leaders to make returns of N100,000 every month to him. There was also the allegation that he collected 500,000 and 800,000 at different times from Fulani settlements in Ijero Local Government Area.
“We were told the State Government and state officials are not aware and that this money he collects secretly. We have asked the state Governor Oyebanji to investigate the allegations. If he is found guilty, he should be sacked.”
The NHRC said it has confidence in the immediate past Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi and his predecessor, Oyebanji adding that if they are aware of the corruption charges against Komolafe, they would have sacked him.
“Dr Fayemi and his successor are not aware from our findings. We trust their records of transparency. They would have sacked him him if they found out he was corrupt. It is now important that he should be investigated.
The group said the Amotekun operatives alleged that Komolafe also has the habit of asking the Fulani leaders in Ekiti to donate cows to him.
“The state governor should as a matter of urgency investigate him. This may be at the root of the kidnapping and collection of ransom and the seeming helplessness of Amotekun in Ekiti State,” the NHRC said.
Efforts to reach Komolafe did not succeed. However, an official of Amotekun who does not want his name in print said he was not aware of the bribe Komolafe is alleged to be taking. He said he hoped the allegations would be investigated to ascertain the truth.
According to him ” This cannot be true. Mr Komolafe is a decent man. We don’t have records of corruption linked to him. It’s an attempt to destroy his name” he said