The House of Representatives member-elect, Engr. Olatunji Akinosi has advised Nigerians to stop demonising its public office holders just to score political points, or get at them for ulterior reasons.
Akinosi, the immediate past Commissioner for Forestry in Ogun state stated this while reacting to a viral video involving his vehicle at Onikan, Lagos State where he was alleged to have knocked down a hawker.
The lawmaker-elect, while stating his side of the incident with our reporter, noted that the whole drama was a case of someone trying to get a pound of flesh at a public officer.
“We were on our way to Onikan youth center, where we empower youths that have very good knowledge of what they want in life but do not have enough funding. Coincidentally, that was the time when the May day celebration was rounded off at Onikan Stadium”
“As we were going, this young gentleman was running with others apparently to sell their goods to those on the other side of the road. They were selling cold drinks. So on their way, the hawker hit my vehicle and the side mirror on the passenger side fell.
“Immediately, my driver came down, apparently to show that he wasn’t at fault. An argument ensued and the guy was telling my driver sorry, “the thing no break”.
“All of a sudden the guy just sat on the floor and I beckoned on my driver to ask what he was still doing there. In less than a minute, I just saw some people banging my car, saying all sorts, like “you have injured somebody, his leg is broken and so on.
“I then came down from the car, after ending my call I was all through the issue. I told them, “you guys didn’t even know what happened. You just came here and started saying what you know nothing about. This is the guy that even hit the car, he was just sitting down on his own, either pretending or trying to arrange himself. How could you then say he was injured.
“Maybe because the other car that was with me had an Ogun state government number plate, as this Jeep had a cover. Then, this lady just came from nowhere to start recording and saying all sorts as you can see in the video.
“She then tried to remove the covered number plate, my driver was holding them off and that was when I said if you injured the guy, then I will injure you back. So, all these were with my driver.
“At this point, I asked them if truly they were coming because a hawker was injured, then where is the Hawker in all this drama?.
“Meanwhile, if you look very well, I was addressing some other people and not the lady doing the video. It was later I learnt she used to be Civil Servant in Ogun State, and that she was dismissed at some point. I guess this was her reason for coming after me really!
“I then told the people that if the hawker is wounded, between where we are sited and opposite is the Zone 2 Police Station, on the other side is the Onikan general hospital. Can you help the guy into my car, you guys should also enter the Tacoma and let’s get to the Police station to incident the case, and then go to the general hospital right after.
“But I gave them a provisio that if when we get to the hospital, it was discovered that truly he is injured, I will take full care of the bill, but if he wasn’t injured, then he will have to buy the full side mirror back. It was then the guy just stood up and said, “Oga, nothing do me”, and he left.
“I then told them, this is how people demonized public office holders just because you want to make something out of them. We will continue to get it wrong as a country if we see public and private officers having a vehicle, all you think of is to demonize that person even when the person is not at fault”, he added
Investigation, however revealed that the lady who recorded the video, Thomas Abiodun was a former staff of the Ogun state government at the College of Health Technology, Ilese.
She was dismissed with others having been founding wanting of gross misconduct unexpected of a civil servant and thereafter agreed disciplinary actions were taken against her sometime ago.
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