A Lagos-based People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Chieftain and real estate developer, Dr Adedipe Dauda Ewenla, has threatened to sue a human rights body named Watchful Eyes for labelling him as one of the sponsors of EndSars protests and a murderer.
The embittered Dr Ewenla has therefore called for the establishment of a regulatory body to monitor the activities of civil society groups as “most of them have no clear cut mission but act the scripts of their financiers to pull down perceived rivals.”
Ewenla’s stance was contained in a press release made available to newsmen where he frowned at an online news titled: “Lagos Group Commends Police As It Begins Arrest Of Masterminds of Lagos Looting, Arson”, while also urging journalists to be wary of such groups.
He said “The story, published on operanewsapp.com, was far away from all known tenets of journalism profession and filled with lies, biases and callous animosities calculated at assassinating my character; all orchestrated by a faceless human rights body under the aegis of The Watchful Eyes.”
The real estate developer wondered why a group that claims to be a watch dog of the society could dwell on falsehood so much that it involves the media in an unhealthy dissemination of injurious information aimed at intentional character assassination.
According to him, “All well-meaning Nigerians, including my very self, condemned the looting spree and arson that characterized the #EndSARS protests and commended the efforts of the Lagos Police Command in fishing out the perpetrators.”
He further expressed with disdain a story credited to the Executive Secretary of The Watchful Eyes, Popoola Adekitan, who resorted to self-glorification of forwarding names of people the group, in its imagination, categorized as masterminds of the heinous crime of looting and arson in Lagos, and went ahead featuring his (Ewenla’s) name.
The story reads interalia that, “We are happy that the law enforcement agencies have started arresting the hoodlums who took advantage of the #EndSARS to loot and also set both private and public property on fire.
“It would be recalled that the Lagos based group submitted the names of Adedipe Dauda Adebeshin a.k.a Ewenla, Tunji Matanmi, Mfon Abel Ekene and Oluwatoyin Shotunde Aromire to Police as those that must be investigated for Lagos looting and arson.”
But I’m a swift response, Ewenla said “It came to me as a rude shock when my attention was drawn to the online publication which linked me and people I don’t even know to the criminal acts and called on the police to sniff me out of hiding, to face prosecution.
“I make bold to say that no one from my fold was involved in the irresponsible act and that, no incident of looting nor arson was reported around my dwelling place and office.
“Again, the paid agent came up with a wicked fallacious story of the killing of a pregnant woman and commended the police for arresting some of my workers, and still went further on calling police operatives to ensure my arrest.
“For goodness sake, the police in Nigeria are well grounded in investigation of cases and in the two instances cited by these mischief makers, neither me nor any of my men have been invited for questioning. Why would anyone take delight in rubbing my name in the mud?
“The day a pregnant woman was killed, I was writing my exam on that day at Lagos State University and the pregnant woman was killed in Ogun State not Lagos State, meanwhile all the suspects have been arrested by the Police at Onipanu, transferred to Eleweran and charged to court.
“If the faceless Human Rights Group did not retract the story I will have no other choice than to instruct my lawyer to file a civil suit against them and whoever they may be working for,” Ewenla concluded.