Civil Societies, Workers Hold Rally against Governor Aregbesola



A civil society group under the auspices of the Civil Societies’ Coalition for Emancipation of Osun State, CSCEO, holds a rally in Osogbo, capital of Osun State asking for the removal of Governor Rauf Aregbesola over unpaid salaries and pensions

A COALITION of civil society organisations is leading a mass rally in Osogbo, capital of Osun State, on Tuesday, July 7, to press for the impeachment of Governor Rauf Aregbesola over unpaid salaries of workers. The state civil servants and pensioners have an outstanding of at least six months of unpaid salaries. Adeniyi Sulaiman Alimi, chairman of the Civil Societies’ Coalition for Emancipation of Osun State, CSCEO, called on residents in the state join the rally. Alimi, however, warned that if there was any trouble during his group’s mass rally on Tuesday in Osogbo, Governor Aregbesola should be held responsible.

Besides, Alimi who spoke in Osogbo on the day of the rally, refuted claims by the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, that the rally in support of Aregbesola’s impeachment was being sponsored by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and Iyiola Omisore, its governorship candidate in the last election, saying such insinuation showed that the APC was still insensitive to the plights of the state indigenes.

He disclosed that since Monday evening, Aregbesola had brought out armoured tanks parading major streets of Osogbo and had already mobilised street boys to attack the protesters. “Our rally will be a peaceful one because this is our state. We are sensible and educated people who won’t cause any problem. The APC should know that our rally is not about unpaid workers salaries and unpaid pensions alone. All we are saying is that Osun is a failed state and we want to the members of the state House of Assembly to treat all the petitions against Aregbesola that are before them.

“We are also in total support of the petition written by Justice Folahanmi Oloyede. What is our business with Omisore or his party? As the chairman of the CSCEO, I have never set my eyes on Omisore,” he said. Rather, he said he had more rapport and working relationship before now with Aregbesola.

“If Aregbesola and his APC have any grouse to settle with Omisore, let them do that through another platform. We are civil societies fighting for the rights of Osun indigenes,” Alimi said.

The CSCEO leader said further that Nigerians should hold the APC and Aregbesola responsible if anything should happen to any member of his group during and after the rally.

“Now, they have rolled out armored tanks against us but that won’t deter us. We are covered by provisions of the Nigeria constitution to hold our rally. If there is any breach of peace or trouble in Osogbo today, it is the governor and his party members that cause it.

“As we said earlier, all the characteristics of a failed state have been manifesting in this state; hunger, poverty, closed hospitals, schools, Government offices, courts, internal displacement of persons, failed and abandoned projects from roads to buildings.

“Jungle justice in the absence of the judiciary, collapse of public utility, insecurity, as burglary and petty stealing pervades the land arising from excruciating hunger and lack. This is not about unpaid salaries alone it is about paucity of managerial skills and high level corruption as exhibited by Aregbesola’s government.

About 20 civil and faith based societies under the banner of the CSCEO mobilised their members towards Tuesday’s rally. They include, The Voices; the KIMPACT; the Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice; the Grassroots Democratic Network; the Christian Initiative for Nation Building; the Christian Leadership Mobilisation and the Better Future Initiative.

Others are the Nigerian Union of Pensioners, NUP; the Justice, Development and Peace Commission Movement, JDPCM, the Positive Movement; the Good Governance Support Group; the Democratic Socialist Movement and Conference of National Political Parties, CNPP.

—  Jul 7, 2015 @ 14:20 GMT


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