The parallel state congress of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ondo State was on Saturday disrupted by hired political thugs, Sahara Reporters can report.
The congress, which started penultimate weekend nationwide, had divided members of the APC in Ondo state into two parallel groups.
On Saturday, two parallel congresses were held simultaneously at the BTO Hall and the DOME International Event Centre, respectively.
The parallel congress at the BTO Hall had barely started when hired thugs numbering about six stormed the venue in an 18-seater Toyota bus.
They were all armed with dangerous weapons, such as stones, machetes, cutlasses and sticks, with they attacked and beat up delegates participating in the congress.
Many of the thugs threw stones at some of the delegates and members of the APC faction who were trying to escape from the attack.
The thugs, identified as members of the National Union of Road Transport Union Workers (NURTW), are believed to be core loyalists of Mr. Jacob Debo, best known as ‘Idajo’.
Mr. Debo is the current Ondo State Chairman of the NURTW and diehard supporter of Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu, Governor of the state.
At least 10 people sustained various degrees of injury during the attack, which lasted roughly two hours.
It was gathered that Mr. Leye Akinola, a candidate for the post of the Publicity Secretary in the factional group of the party, was brutally attacked with machete.
Several journalists covering the congress were also attacked, as well as two stalwarts of the party, Bamidele Baderinwa (better known as ‘Whyte’) who is the lawmaker representing Ifedore/Idanre Federal Constituency and Bola Ilori.
Mr. Baderinwa had his native dress attire torn into shreds by the rampaging thugs.
Sahara Reporters observed that men of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) were helpless as the armed thugs damaged the property inside the Hall.
The marauders also destroyed the glass windows of the BTO hall and smashed the windscreen of some private vehicles parked at its entrance.
The thugs made bonfire at the entrance of the hall and chased away the factional group with a threat to “kill” anyone in the state who dares call for a parallel congress.
The sponsored attack later led into a heavy fracas that spread to the main road. as many scampered for safety. Those who escaped with deep wounds are currently receiving treatment at the Adetade Hospital.
Meanwhile, the faction of the APC recognized by the party’s national leadership is currently continuing with its own congress at the DOME centre.
The party’s delegates across the 18 local government areas of the state are currently participating in an election that would saw to the emergence of a new party executives in the state.
The party’s Acting Chairman, Ade Adetimehin, is contesting for the same seat unopposed.
Mr. Adetimehin had told SaharaReporters on phone that his executives wre well recognised by the party national leadership in Abuja.
Earlier on Friday, Akeredolu had met with members of the APC at the party’s secretariat shortly after receiving the congress committee headed by Mathew Omegara.
He had said members of the party were ready to ensure that the job of the congress committee was smooth and freely conducted. Responding, Omegara noted that the committee was ready to discharge its job without fear or favour.
SOURCE :sahara reporters (news)