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Why Agagu’s CSO had to die

Posted by By TUNDE RAHEEM, Akure on 2007/06/02 | Views: 1425 |

Why Agagu’s CSO had to die


There is apprehension in Akure, the Ondo State capital, even as pro-government groups and opposition elements trade blame over the gruesome murder, on Wednesday night, of Mr. Tunde Awanebi, Chief Security Officer (CSO) of Governor Olusegun Agagu.

•Police place N2m ransom on killers

There is apprehension in Akure, the Ondo State capital, even as pro-government groups and opposition elements trade blame over the gruesome murder, on Wednesday night, of Mr. Tunde Awanebi, Chief Security Officer (CSO) of Governor Olusegun Agagu.

Awanebi, a retired Assistant Commissioner of Police was brutally gunned down Wednesday around 9pm in a supermarket at Ijoka area of Akure metropolis – an act, eyewitness accounts told Saturday Sun was carried out by a five man gang that had allegedly trailed him to the supermarket.

The death, coming barely 24 hours after the inauguration of Agagu for a second term in office, has further heightened the sense of insecurity and tension in the volatile South-west state which had been thrown into an orgy of violence following the announcement of the result of the April 14 governorship election in the state.
Although the police have announced a N2 million reward for anyone with information on the killers, they are yet to report a break in the investigation into the assassination. Meanwhile various groups are advancing all manner of theories as to who may have masterminded the murder, insisting that it is a direct spin-off of the last gubernatorial election in the state.

First daughter of the slain CSO, Mrs Funmi Wahab, told journalists in Akure Friday that the killing of her father was politically motivated. Mrs. Wahab stated that her late father was murdered by those she said wanted him out of the political system, saying the killers of the late CSO did see him as security threat “so the best option left for them was to eliminate him.”

The daughter stressed that the killing might have been masterminded by people in politics whom she said wanted to achieve one dubious political achievement or another adding that their believe was that the late CSO would be a stumbling block for them.

She described her late father as a brave man who believed in truth and justice, saying that the truth and justice which her father believed would prevail and expose his killers to the whole world.
But it is not only the family that is pointing fingers at the politicians.

“It is either he knows too much or he has done some deal with some people which went awry”, one state house official who craved anonymity told Saturday Sun. According to him, it is rather too co-incidental that the man would be killed a few hours after he was allegedly relieved of his job as CSO.

“Although the bane of the Agagu administration has been the problem of trust of core staff and personal aides of His Excellency, I do not think that the CSO was one of such staff”, he said, adding that the assassination has immediately spun off two parallel theories.

According to him, “one group believes that the opposition were so bitter with the CSO for the role he played in swinging the guber election in favour of his principal, the PDP flagbearer, while the other argues that he might indeed have been one of the moles in the Agagu government who were perceived to be more loyal to the opposition Labour Party and that his sack might compel him to share intelligence with the opposition ahead of the opening of their case at the election tribunal”.

But a police source told Saturday Sun on phone that it would be unfair to the memory of the slain officer to begin to make political permutations around the assassination, as “it is possible the thing does not have anything to do with politics”
However, the state commissioner of police Mr Innocent Ilosuoke said that police might not rule out issue of politics in the killing of the retired police officer. He said police had intensified efforts on their investigation to unravel the mystery surrounding the brutal killing.

Meanwhile the state government, through the Chief of Staff to the governor, Mr. Femi Agagu (a brother of the governor’s), has said that the government had not removed the slain CSO before his death as was being speculated. Agagu said that government did not have any intention of relieving the late CSO of his post as the chief security officer to the governor.

Also, one of the wives of the deceased, Mrs. Edith Awanebi, while speaking with newsmen, described the death of her late husband as a devastating calamity which has befallen both family and the entire PDP in the state.
The widow said that if she had the premonition that her husband would be killed that night, “I would not have allowed him to go out again, but see now, they have wasted him for us.”

Saturday Sun had gathered that the gunmen who had been trailing the car of late officer on two motorcycles actually accosted him at the supermarket and even greeted him. They were reported to have congratulated the deceased on the re-election of his boss, Agagu, a development which sources said made the late CSO to wait and exchange pleasantries with his would be killers.

It was as Awanebi was said to have turned his back to enter the supermarket that the gunmen opened fire on the unsuspecting retired police boss
The sporadic shooting of the gunmen allegedly lasted for over 10 minutes caused pandemonium in the area as people scurried to safety
After shooting the CSO several times on his head, the attackers allegedly watched him die and ascertain he was really dead before they left the spot
Awanebi, it was speculated had actually being relieved of his appointment on Wednesday morning by governor Agagu, but that his sack had not been officially announced by the government before he was killed in the evening of that very day – a sack which the government now says, never happened.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.