Daniel Refutes Governor Amosun’s Allegation Again

Sharing is caring!

 The Tragi-Comedy in Ogun State (Part 2)

by Gbenga Daniel

I recently broke my silence on the current happenings in Ogun State. And I have just seen the response from Governor Ibikunle Amosun in the Punch and the Nigerian Tribune. I observed that rather than address the salient issues raised in my response to the shenanigan called the White Paper on the supposed Land Probe, Governor Amosun resorted to abuses of my person, even as he further raised some other baseless issues.

I wish to thank my friends, associates and other well wishers who, after reading my first response, were of the view that I should no longer join issues with someone and a government whose evil purposes against me are now well known to discerning members of the Nigerian public. To these well meaning Nigerians, silence is golden. Regrettably, we are no longer in a position to keep silent, especially when blatant falsehood is daily being published and broadcast against my person and the government I headed in newspapers, magazines, radio, television and the social media. For close to eight years now, immediately after Gov Amosun, then a PDP Senator, was suspended from the Party for violence and other gross misconducts, he never ceased from planning, orchestrating and executing all manners of evil in the name of politics and the dogged quest for power. A Report written by the authorities of the Nigerian Police in 2007 stated extensively the danger posed to the polity in Ogun State by Senator Ibikunle Amosun’s penchant for violence and subversion of constituted authorities. Here are excerps from the reports…”..also a Police eyewitness of the rank of an ASP stated that Sen Ibikunle Amosun was seen leading the hoodlums. He went further to say that he called the attention of the Senator by holding his hand and urged him to talk to his men, but he responded that as far as the properties are with PDP inscriptions, they should go ahead destroying them, other eyewitnesess also corroborated his evidence…..” this was the build up to the 2007 elections where the PDP office in Abeokuta was burnt down and over 20 vehicles belonging to PDP and their sympathisers were destroyed. We have the pictures of Gov then Sen Amosun and the property destroyed in our archives in case of any denials. Inspite of the fact that my person and our Administration were the victims of the subversive activities of Senator Amosun, I nevertheless pleaded with the Police not to prosecute him for his many cases of violence and sundry criminal activities. I took that position in order not give the impression of intolerance and the possibility of heating up the polity beyond what it was. Many of those who made a plea on behalf of Senator Amosun at that time have now become victims of his persecution mission in Ogun State. Against this rampage no one is spared.

Persecution of Prominent Citizens:

Prominent among the victims of the current persecution in Ogun State is the former Chief Judge of the State, another eminent Jurist, and Chairman of the Ogun State Elders Consultative Forum, His Excellency, Prince Bola Ajibola, who, in a recent public event presided over by Governor Amosun, got the short end of the stick for his acts of patriotism and peace making in Ogun State. Prior to that unfortunate incident, a prominent Egba Chief, one of the most outstanding architects in our country, Apagun Wole Olumide, much in character like heroes in history, died in mysterious circumstances, after his property and core investments were forcibly taken over by Governor Amosun along with other humiliations he suffered in the hands of the temporary holders of political power in Abeokuta. Since February 2012, the Multi Million Naira Golf Resort Hotel, a private concern in Abeokuta (in which one of the companies I have interest invested), has been occupied illegally by Policemen deployed by Governor Amosun without any court order or notice, despite the fact that the matter was already in an Abeokuta High court. The subject property is also among the ongoing EFCC charges against me (count no 4 in particular). Why is Gov Amosun taking laws into his hand?.

And on the Apagun Olumide’s matter, the same Amosun that frustrated the man to death, rolled out his propaganda machine to make the world believe that I killed Apagun Olumide, because he had implicated me in his statements to the EFCC. Fortunately for me,  the EFCC filed in court the 20 page statement which Apagun Olumide made in his own handwriting.  In the document, not a single word was made against my person by Apagun.

People will readilly recall the tragic drama on the day of Apagun’s burial when the Governor seized his corpse, against the wish of his family members, insisting on an autopsy which was eventually carried out by a certain Dr. Amosun, before the burial finally took place after some 6 hours delay, all of that to give the impression that he was murdered by OGD. I was happy that the family eventually succumbed to the Governor’s insistence on an autopsy (because there was nothing to hide), but with the condition that it took place in the presence of another Doctor of the family’s choice. However, five months after the Autopsy, Mr Governor is yet to release the Report. Where is the Autopsy Report on Apagun Oluwole Olumide?. May his soul rest in peace.

The foregoing preamble becomes necessary, because it is important for our people to understand what has happened to our state. As the Governor of the state for eight years, it is obvious that I remain a major stakeholder in or out of office, I cannot, in good conscience, default in my moral obligation to our people.

When we lost Otunba Dipo Dina to what Police Reports concluded was a case of Armed Robbery almost three years ago, the Amosun propaganda machine, as usual, went to town and declared that OGD killed him. The first policy pronouncement of Amosun in Government during his swearing in ceremony, was to rename the Gateway International Stadium in Ijebu Ode after the late Otunba Dipo Dina. This Stadium, built by our administration, had already been named Michael Adenuga Jr. International Stadium in honor of a living legend, an illustrious son of Ogun State. Dr Mike Adenuga, who through his giant telecommunication outfit, Globacom, had undertaken to maintain the Stadium in perpetuity while also taking over the funding of the Gateway United Football Club which we rejuvenated.

More than one year after becoming Governor and the Chief Security Officer, with all the security apparatchiks under his watch (the Police, SSS, Attorney General, and the State Director of Public Prosecutions), it is our expectation that Gov. Amosun should have commenced criminal prosecution against my person for murder to give effect to his many allegations and slander against me. Perhaps our Governor is still “working” on the Report of yet another Panel, the political ‘Truth’ Commission also set up to witch hunt OGD. Now this: if MOTIVE, as Criminologists aver, is a major factor in unravelling crime, especially murder, then, who is the person who profited maximally from the death of Dipo Dina?.  Who took the ACN ticket already guaranteed for Otunba Dipo Dina?. Was someone crying more than the bereaved, and trying to cover his track by hurriedly renaming an institution after Otunba Dina,  even before reading his hand over notes? These are questions requiring direct answers from Gov Amosun.

One word for the over-zealous aides of the Governor: whereas you all have a job to do to earn your living, be advised to refrain from personal abuse, and excise the discipline and decency to address only issues. Let us watch our language and desist from Elders and personalities and address issues. The people of Ogun State are civilized, urbane and well brought up to respect elders in all circumstances. As Governor and Leader of the PDP, on which platform Governor Amosun emerged as Senator in 2003, I lay claim to knowing him a bit more than most of you his aides. In fact, I can write a whole book on him.  Many of you will soon find out the true Ibikunle Amosun. I leave the rest for now.

In addressing issues raised under the insultive Amosun’s ‘Aid Memoir for Mr Gbenga Daniel’, I wish to state as follows:

1. I have now read the 262- page Report of Ogun States Land Panel 2003-2011. We finally downloaded it from the Internet and do believe that it is the authentic version.

2. I once again submit, with all emphasis, that most of the conclusions and observations of the Report, which served as the basis of the ‘white’ paper, were based on wrong information, outright and sometimes deliberate falsehood, half truths, and mindless mischief, with the main purpose of subjecting me to ridicule in the public eye, convicting me in the court of public opinion and creating a fait accompli for all the other Judges to take a cue from in the several cases already before them in various courts in Ogun State. At the last count, at least over 20 different cases are in different courts in the state. All of these cases were to the knowledge of the Land Panel while it sat and the crafters of the infamous ‘white’ paper. I affirmed this in the second part of what may now become the ‘Tragi-comedy series in Ogun State’, a book I may have to write for posterity if the current shenanigans does not stop.

3. A supposedly “fact finding” Panel delivered ‘judgement’ on matters before courts of competent and higher jurisdiction. Though not a lawyer, my little knowledge of law suggests that the Panel and those who served on it were in contempt of court as concerned those matters already in the various Courts. This is especially so given the fact that the pending cases were brought to their attention.

4. The summary of the report was that Land was made too cheap during our Administration. Consequently, imaginary and outrageous were placed on the various portions of land in Ogun State, thereby insinuating fraud and recklessness in land administration by our Government. Meanwhile, there is no proven case in the entire 262-page report where any one claimed to have given me any material or non-material gratification, directly or indirectly, for granting rebates on land. Let me help them stretch this further by using this medium to challenge anybody, individual or corporate, who gave me gratification in this or any other matter to say so publicly now or forever hold their peace.

The recommendations of the issues purported discovered were to put it very mildly inconsistent, and makes a mockery of the entire process. The most important cases were deliberately overlooked by the panel. We reserve most of the salient issues for the courts to examine.

5. Quite on  the contrary, and for the umpteenth time, I submit that access to cheap land in Ogun State in addition to transparency and what we described in our manifesto as Business Unusual approach to governance were the key ingredients with which we turned around the fortunes of Ogun State. Rebates and discount was the rule and not the exception and to the best of my recollection, EVERY LAND APPLICANT THAT REQUESTED FOR REBATE AND WAS BROUGHT TO MY ATTENTION GOT IT during our tenure. I ask anyone with a contrary experience to publicly challenge this statement.

6. Flowergate Estate, Sagamu (RIYE Roundabout):

This a good exemplification of our Land Policy. The location which is now home to NESTLE Plc was no more than a Robbers’ Den where motorists were waylaid prior to 2003. Human memories are unfortunately very short. At some point, information reached me that Nestlé plc was planning to build a major facility, which the multinational company was considering siting in one of Nigeria’s neighbouring countries. Reasons adduced were security related and lack of infrastructure.  I approached Chief Olusegun Osunkeye, the company’s Chairman, an indigene of Ogun State, and virtually ‘blackmailed’ him that I would not forgive him, if he did not ensure that the facility was sited in Ogun State. Of course the company asked for incentives and concensions, because, at that time, two other states in Nigeria were ready to give land virtually free of charge to them. Rather than lose such an opportunity, I was prepared to give the requested land free of charge if need be. I am neither a co owner nor a shareholder in Nestle, but I have no regret for this decision. It was only after the Company started to develop the factory that the place was reclaimed from armed bandits and the value of land in that area started to appreciate. I don’t remember how much Nestlé to paid eventually, but Chief Osunkeye is still alive and can confirm if there was any underhand consideration to anyone for this gesture. It was this pioneering effort of Nestle that encouraged us to then  formalize the Flowergate Industrial Estate created out of that jungle. The Amosun Administration has done nothing by way of Infrastructure in this Estate. We gave several other companies, (names withheld for now, including AD members then, and later ACN sympathisers, known National figures) generous rebates in that evolving Estate. Why then single out Western Publishing Company Ltd because of my perceived association with them?. Or is a limited liability company now disadvantaged on account of being associated with a Public Officer?. From our modest efforts in that area, Ogun State government today is now reaping bountiful revenue from PAYEE, tax returns other sundry charges from Nestle and several others in that axis, while the Justice Akinyemi Panel Report speaks of some phamtom Millions of Naira lost in revenue predicated on misinformation in an area with zero demand for land usage at that time, without considering the raison deitre and the discretionary powers of a Governor. I want to believe that incumbent Governors around the country are monitoring the Tragi-comedy in Ogun State.

I need to put in perspective the issues raised on the discretionary power in land administration given to the Governor by quoting relevant portions of  the Land Use Act. Discretion means “as the person excising it deems fit”. Its operationalisation is contigent on circumstances, individual merit, expediency and good sense. It is never a matter of “right or wrong”, legally speaking, because it is a subjective category, the products of which necessarily vary by virtue of individual differences and shifting circumstances. Given this conceptual clarification, to claim to excise discretion by attaching fixed prices to portions of land, as the Amosun government claimed to have done for different categories of users reveals a lack of understanding of what discretion in land administration means and the intendment of the provisions of the Land Use Act. Fixed prices are rules and not discretionary. When a situation arises when the government that fixed unchanging prices of land and their approved rebates needs to give land, gratis, to an investor being begged to come to the state, what will happen? If it is eventually decided that the land should be given gratis, would it be considered that the Governor had committed crime or that it was immoral for him to do that?

My submission here is that in the hurry to fast-track industrialization in Ogun State, we gave rebates based on various factors, and there was no one to the best of my recollection (and I repeat NOBODY) who was denied favourable consideration not withstanding his political, religious or ethnic background.

7. The Power Project

This requires a detailed response, at the appropriate time.  Governor Amosun’s response referred to anonymous Companies X, Y and Z which delivered power to their organisations allegedly at costs cheaper than what we executed for the state. We are grateful to the government for finally acknowledging that we commissioned and handed over one of the Power Stations. Quite interestingly, the Government which dismissed the project as based on old technology is now selling the resultant power to some organizations after connecting same to the State Secretariat, Governor’s Office, Government House and other discriminate selected, government installations in that axis. I was informed for instance that the Judges Quarters were excluded because it was an OGD project!. I dont know which project will not be OGD project after 8 years of governance. However the Old Commissioners and House of Assembly Quarters were connected. I am also told that Day Waterman College (One of the Institutions who enjoyed our Land rebates for which we remain proud) is now being connected to what is now called ‘OGD’ Power by our people. By the way, my very good friend and Associate,  the late Bank Chief, Mr Tayo Aderinokun  (may his Gentle soul rest in perfect peace) was one of the people I ‘blackmailed’ to come and “establish something” in Ogun State. He responded with the Day Waterman College. I’m reliably informed that some of our Governor’s children are students in that very school. Could that be the reason why the school is now being favoured with Power from Oke-Mosan? It is well! When the identities of the anonymous companies are unveiled, we shall tell the full story of what we went through despite the frustrations from the then House of Assembly which, from recent revelations and confessions, we now know had the hand of Governor Ibikunle Amosun. Let it suffice for now that, given the comparative figures we have of similar projects around the country, our power project remains the cheapest per Megawatt. As a Fellow of the Academy of Engineering and an Expert in power projects , my counsel is that some people should not expose their ignorance by dabbling into areas in which they have neither knowledge nor competence.

8. Gateway Agro Cargo Airport Project;

After, the then House of Assembly was used by Opposition internal and external, (this can be logically assumed as main ring Leaders in the House then, i.e. the Speaker and his Deputy are now members of Amosun’s administation) to  scuttle access to finance to progress some of our projects, we then aggressively sort and found a Consortium to finance and construct the International Airport. At the point of handover, the total amount expended by our administration  was approximately N200m, most of which were paid to the Internal Architects, Messrs Dal-Handersah Assoc. and other consultants. We challenge the Amosun administration to tell the world where the government of Ogun state under my care expended the N2b claimed in their Aide Memoir. Meanwhile we must let our people know that before we left Government, we had secured all the necessary Approvals from the Presidency and Aviation Authorities and have turned the sod. Meanwhile, it was a sad day when the Federal government last week announced interest in supporting 5 different Cargo airports in Nigeria and Ogun state the most viable from the feasibility studies was excluded. Has our Governor also rejected this important project, which is key to a complete turn around of our economic potentials just as he told the NUC, that he does not want The Taiye Solarin University of Education again, simply because it was the initiative of the OGD administration. In the meantime and while Ogun State go back to slumber, the following states have either commissioned or are constructing their own Airports; Akwa Ibom State, Gombe State, Delta State, Katsina State etc. This is the second year of this administration, Mr Governor should tell us if that lofty project have also be jettisoned. Progress can only be delayed for some time.

9. Ogun-Guangdong Free Trade Zone, Igbesa;

There will be no space here to tell the full story of this Industrial Estate with potential to beat both the Otta and Ikeja Industrial Estates if the dream is not killed by the Temporary Powerlords in Abeokuta. I however that Chief Obasanjo for his efforts and God bless the soul of our Late President Ya’Adua who finally granted us the Licence. As if the Chinese knew, I recalled that the Chinese insisted that I had to be the Chairman of the Venture. our Economic Adviser then Ms Yosola Akinbi then explained that a Seating Governor cannot possibly be. Their fears was passion as they saw the passion with which we fast tracked all the issues and the openly compared their experience with what they saw in Imo State where they originally wanted to site the project before we ‘snatched’ the project to Igbesa. My old colleague, Onwa, the former Governor of IMO state can still not forgive me on this matter. Beyond this suggestion at the MOU stage, nothing has been done and the Board is yet to be constituted until we left last year. As I said earlier, we still have a lot more to say on these matters.

9. Careless and Reckless Statements by Govt Officials:

We have since decided that careless statements by over zealous Aides will no longer go unchallenged, to this end we have filed a suit against Gov Amosun and his Finance commissioner for their reckless statement against my administration recently. The young man who alleged a fictitious N2b expenditure on the Airport project should be getting ready for the Courts as well. Whereas, Gov Amosun may temporarily escape the court hammer because of his temporary immunity, over zealous aides may soon find out that they will be on their own, when the chips are down.

10. Land Allocations and Associated Companies:

I saw a list of some companies listed as associated with me. Ten of those companies must have been associated with me in the imagination of the kangaroo Panel. I have no secret companies, as most of my investments were duly registered before my venturing into politics. Blue Chapel was registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission in 1999 by one of my Solicitors, Messrs Yinka Sogunle & Co. The Registration no at the CAC is RC 371222. I also affirm that, on further investigation, agreed consideration were paid by ALL the companies and organizations associated with me contrary to the impression created in the said publication. This is part of the shoddy investigation that I referred to. For the information of my traducers, however, I was the Chief Promoter of virtually all the legitimate businesses and companies in Ogun State during my tenure as Governor. I encouraged all because our Administration reasoned that it was the only way to industrialize and generate employment as a means of stemming insecurity while creating  an atmosphere for prosperity for our people. This was predicated on the sacred mandate of our people which I held for eight years. The Amosun Administration has a right and a duty to design and execute its own programme accordingly. It has no right, however, to maliciously undo what we have done without recourse to the law, due process and the judiciary whenever his actions are in dispute.  This is democracy and not fascism. That is our position.

Let me state here also that part of my statutory responsibility as Governor was to sign Certificates of Occupancy. And I signed several thousands of them. The issue of discrepancies in the dates on letters of application, time of payments, ascertaining payments, etc, were not the primary responsibilities of the Governor. And I believe that despite the challenges the Bureau of Land faced because of the surge in demand for land at some point, there were sufficient measures in place to ensure that the C of Os were perfected and released only when applicants had fulfilled all conditions precedent to the issuance and release of C of Os. This is perfectly in line with the Land Use Act. In proven cases of infractions or underpayment, without the approval of the Governor, the rational thing is for the concerned parties to be invited to fulfil all financial and procedural obligations (possibly with reasonable penalties),  rather than the malicious and irrational purported cancellation of Certificates of Occupancy. For sure, another king will definitely rule after Pharaoh! The empty catch-phrase called “Mission to rebuild” has now revealed itself as mission to destroy. In a proper court, all the people hiding payment receipts, files and not doing their jobs would be identified and subpoenaed to give evidence, instead of the malicious conclusions of a Kangaroo panel acting out a script written for it. I am sure the individuals, companies and churches being persecuted because of their supposed association with OGD have the capacity to fight for their right under the law. I also hope and pray that there is no tint of Jihad in all these.

11.  The Brazen Lies and Hypocrisy and Compromise;

We will now publish,  one of the several approvals of Gov Amosun granting a 50% rebate on Land charges in Dec 2011. It will be recalled that Amosun himself announced rebates up to 80% in the last Economic summit. What kind of hypocrisy is this?. What then is the rationale for the Panels conclusions and those EFCC charges?.

Now this, Mr Ayodele Biobaku, one of the members of the Amosun/Akinyemi Land Panel using one of his companies Q M B Investment Ltd was granted a 75% rebate on land worth N150m, according to their own estimates, he paid only N37m ‘resulting in loss of revenue of’ N113m to the State, using the usual  words of the Panel. My question; Is this part of the consideration  of Gov Amosun to compromise the Panel member(s) for the hatchet job to nail OGD at all costs. I also hope EFCC is taking notes against the imminent loss of immunity by Gov Amosun at the end of his inglorious tenure. We are waiting for denials and we will then roll out documentations.

12.  The Residence of former Governor Olusegun Osoba:

Former Governor Olusegun Osoba, built his house in the Ibara GRA in Abeokuta. When we took over the administration in 2003, a prominent citizen of the State, Dr Orebiyi, wrote a petition, that his only residence in Abeokuta was annexed by Governor Osoba to his residence forcefully and he wanted redress. Some prominent Civil servants also brought information that additional 2 buildings then belonging to Tourism Board were also annexed, by the former Governor. In resolving the matter, I did not even bother to disturb or call Gov Osoba explanations. I simply pacified Dr Orebiyi and offered personal compensation to him to rest the case. And the old man agreed and the case was so rested. May the gentle soul of Dr Orebiyi rest in perfect peace. As to the complaint by the civil servants at that time, I simply overlooked it out of respect for my Predecessor. These things were routine during my administration and were never matters  for media and cheap political propaganda despite our partisan political differences. We inherited several cases,  disputes and petitions which will never end as long as man lives, but rather than set up a Panel to witch hunt, we set up a team to evaluate and ratify where possible. Instead of demolition and revocation, we facilitated win-win situations, ratified where necessary and moved on.  I believe the Handlers of Amosun needs to do some tutoring on how not to debase an institution that will certainly outlive him. I repeat for reemphasis, that THOSE WHO LIVE IN GLASS HOUSES DO NOT THROW STONES.

Finally,  it should be noted that we have tried to separate the ‘Messengers’ from the message in this edition out of deep respect for the Judiciary especially as it concerns Hon Justice Biodun Akinyemi and other members of the panel. Truth is that we have loads of information at our disposal that clearly shows elements of compromise in the way they carried out their assignment. Rather than splash these on the pages of newspapers, we have resolved to submit them to the relevant regulatory authorities to make complaints and ask for specific redress.

In conclusion, the Land Use Act is the only document known to the laws of Ogun State. There is no body, corporate or otherwise, known as Commission or Panel on Land Matters. Using a serving Judge to chair such a panel confers neither legality nor legitimacy on it, and cannot be used to conceal the dastardly and malicious intents of Mr Governor. It is only a court of competent jurisdiction that can adjudicate on land matters in Our State. Any other route is ulta vires, illegal and a nullity. Mr Governor should wait for the final decisions of the various courts, which where necessary will still get to the Supreme Court, and stop taking the laws in his own hand. This certainly is a long distance run and not a dash.

Long live Ogun State and long live the Federal Republic on Nigeria.


Otunba (Engr.) Gbenga Daniel, FNSE., FNAEng.

Immediate Past Governor, Ogun State.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *