According to a report by SaharaReporters, the Concerned Ikole Local Government Area Indigenes Worldwide, a group of indigenes from Ikole LGA of Ekiti State, has accused the state governor, Kayode Fayemi, of preventing them from going ahead with a peaceful prayer walk planned to address issues affecting their land.
In a statement on Friday, the group said the stoppage occurred “after they thought we are coming home to protest against their non-performances in our land.”
“We only arranged this prayer walk in order to have a meeting with our kings who we want love to return to for our communities to develop. Everything to be used has been paid for; shirts, banner, and all other things needed have been bought. We need you to help us out. We are all home and others are still coming to partake. We are all home and others are still coming to partake,” the group added.
The group had on July 14, 2021 written to the state Commissioner of Police through the Divisional Police Officer, Ikole Ekiti Headquarters saying, “We, the sons and daughters of Ikole Local Government Area under the umbrella of Concerned Ikole LGA Indigenes, wish to humbly notify your office of our intention to host a prayer rally on behalf of the entire communities in Ikole Local Government. This peaceful rally tagged Restoration Walk, is scheduled to come up on Saturday, August 28, 2021 by 6.30am.
“The important place of call shall be the palace of Elekole of Ikole Ekiti, where we hope to meet with Royal Fathers, with a message of Hope, Unity and Love to the Council of Obas in Ikole Local Government Area.
“As true sons and daughters that we are, our rally promised to be devoid of any political or religious undertone, all forms of violent with the hope that your office will afford us adequate security measures to be put in place to address or curtail any intention of clueless individuals from interfering with our procession.
“Conclusively sir, we assure you sir of our commitment to make Restoration Walk a memorable one as it is planned to address the issues affecting our land through prayers and as well proffer the way forward out of the unpleasant situations ravaging our land.”
The letter was signed by Fasiku Opeyemi O., the public relations officer of the group.
However, a copy of a letter of response from the state government sighted by SaharaReporters said the request was declined by the state police command.
The letter from the Office of the Governor signed by Special Adviser, Communications and Strategy, Akin Rotimi and dated August 25, 2021, was titled, 'Re: Prayer Rally By Concerned Ikole LGA Indigenes' with Ref No: EK/SACS/012.
Addressed to the Convener, Concerned Ikole LGA Indigenes Worldwide, and seeking the attention of Fasiku Opeyemi O. Public Relations Officer, the letter stated, “We are in receipt of a letter from the office of the Commissioner of Police, Ekiti State Command, which is a response to your letter informing his office of a prayer rally planned for Saturday, August 28, 2021.
“We have been requested to convey the contents of the letter to you, please, specifically the advisory of the Commissioner of Police, that due to the spike in cases of COVID-19, the programme should not hold as planned.
“You may wish to comply with the advisory or communicate further with the Commissioner of Police, please. Thank you.”