Ifedayo Abegunde, the controversial Secretary to the Government of Ondo State during the weekend again publicly slapped a police officer attached to his office as a security aide, Sahara Reporters has learned.
A government source that confirmed this on Monday said that Abegunde also known as “Abena” assaulted the policeman during the traditional wedding ceremony of the son of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu held at the Landmark Event centre in Lagos on Saturday.
The source accused the embattled Secretary to the State Government of being intolerant towards his security aide at the ceremony and on several occasions, his domestic aides are not spared.
“What I just know was that he [SSG] gave the police orderly a very dirty slap and this caused government officials at the wedding ceremony a public embarrassment because some of us had to intervene”.
A driver attached to a government official in the state who also attended the wedding ceremony gave graphic details of the assault during a telephone conversation with SaharaReporters.
The driver who spoke anonymously with SaharaReporters witnessed the act and said that the police officer was slapped twice after being accused of indolence while on duty at the ceremony.
“The SSG [Ifedayo Abegunde] embarrassed the police orderly at the wedding ceremony of the Governor’s son held in Lagos state on Saturday.
“What actually happened was that Abegunde wanted to pass an urgent message to someone close to the next table where he sat but he could not immediately do so.
“I think he [SSG] was expecting his police orderly to help deliver the message but to his surprise, the man was nowhere to be found behind his back.
“By the time the police orderly showed up, the furious SSG invited him to the back of the hall and slapped him on the twice while the incident, the incident caused a shouting match between the duo as the officer got really angry.
“Some policemen who witnessed the public assault from a distance intervened and reported the issue to a senior police officer who was on the entourage of the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, who was a guest at the expansive wedding ceremony”.
VIDEO: Secretary to the Ondo State Government, Ifedayo Abegunde aka “Abena” spraying cash at a party in Akure and kicking party goers who surged forward to pick some cash pic.twitter.com/YfQtC2rGp6
— Sahara Reporters (@SaharaReporters) November 23, 2017
He added that the assault on the police orderly was reported to the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris in Abuja through other senior officers who sympathized with police aide.
This, according to the driver, forced the police to withdraw all the police officers attached to government political appointees in the state except the Governor and his Deputy on Monday afternoon.
SaharaReporters contacted Femi Joseph, the spokesman of Ondo State Police Command but he denied the knowledge of withdrawal of police officers to government dignitaries in the state.
“I am not aware of this but I can tell you that our men are still at their various beats in the state” he said on the telephone.
But a police officer attached to one of the commissioners in the state confirmed to SaharaReporters regarding an order requesting their withdrawal to protest the maltreatment of the police aide to the SSG.
“We have been asked to withdraw as aides with an immediate effect,” he said.
Meanwhile, an Akure based human rights lawyer, Morakinyo Ogele, has described the conduct of the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) as barbaric.
Ogele said Abegunde was not fit for the position of the SSG to the government of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu considering his crude action against uniformed security agent, he also deployed his other atrocities.
He said that the governor should sack the embattled SSG from his cabinet in order to avoid tarnishing the image of his administration in the state.
The human rights lawyer also called on the Commissioner of Police in Ondo State, Gbenga Adeyanju, to order the immediate arrest of Abegunde for assault.
“The man (Ifedayo Abegunde) is not fit and proper to be the secretary to the state government. Looking at Rotimi Akeredolu mode of life, he won’t tolerate such nonsense.
“The other time, Governor Akeredolu appealed to me personally when one Olalekan Odere briefed me to sue him (“Abena”) in a case similar to this, Akeredolu appealed to me to drop the case. He has a bad habit, he is out of control.
“Anyone with such temperament is not fit to hold the SSG office. I appeal to Rotimi Akeredolu to sack him within seven days.
“I fear that this slapping habit may soon cause Ondo state and the entire Southwest region a global embarrassment. If the government is retaining him, he has to be sent to a “rehabilitation home” for anger management, so he can learn how to conduct himself in such an elevated position.
” When the SSG slapped a police officer, that action connotes that he has slapped the Inspector General of Police and the entire police force.
“The Commissioner of Police in Ondo state is hereby given seven days to arrest and charge the SSG to court for criminal assault. This will restrain him from furthering his slapping habits,” he said.