Minister of State for Transportation, Gbemisola Saraki, has accused Kwara State governor, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, of carrying out a revenge mission against her family by demolishing a property built by her late father, Dr Olusola Saraki, in Illorin, the state capital, for old people known as ‘Ile Arugbo’.
In a statement on Friday, the minister told Governor Abdulrazaq that “revenge cannot be a policy thrust of governance”, adding that the demolition was unwarranted and “disrespectful” to her.
According to her, the act could jeopardise the chances of the All Progressives Congress in the state in future elections.
She said, “At 3:00am on January 2, 2020, the governor of Kwara State, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, gave orders to the police to open fire on aged women at the contested welfare home popularly known as ‘Ile Arugbo’ (home for the aged) owned by my father, Dr Abubakar Olusola Saraki.
“As a staunch and loyal member of APC, I have kept quiet to date on the happenings in my state. I had done this for a number of reasons, including trying to keep my head when all about me are losing theirs.
“However, given the turn of events and the violent nature of the governor’s position, it is only right for me to speak now.
“By some recent steps taken, especially with Thursday’s actions, Kwara State APC must be careful to not allow a few elements with their own agenda other than governance to turn their personal vendetta into the official position of APC in the state.
“They must not be allowed to hijack the narrative of what our party stands for.
“My silence should not be misconstrued as tacit approval or support for the actions taken by the governor.
“However, I am comforted by the knowledge that my father’s good work and his respect, support and love for the aged, which was sadly lacking in the governor’s activities of Thursday, simply cannot be erased by demolishing a bungalow.
“When it comes down to it, Ile Arugbo is a piece of bare land that holds symbolic value of what my father stood for – humanitarianism, and that doesn’t start nor end with a building.
“But after the events of Thursday when the aged women were tear gassed and shot at in the wee hours of the morning (3:00 am), I do not want my silence to be misconstrued, as mischief makers have used that silence to attribute false statements allegedly made by me.
“The level of force and violence that the governor chose to adopt was totally unwarranted.
“It is especially disrespectful to me personally as a member of the APC since 2015, who welcomed and supported those who only joined us a couple of months to the elections, which includes the governor himself, that my position as a member of the party was not given any consideration and/or regard when approaching this issue.”