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19.01.2021 Justice Fayemi’s Security Adviser Assaults Mother of Two in Ekiti. And It’s Neither The First Nor Second Time

Published 19th Jan, 2021

By Damilola Ayeni

A mother of two, Febisola Soares, has narrated how Sola Durodola, a senior Special Adviser to Ekiti State Governor on Security Matters, assaulted her in Ado-Ekiti.

After refusing to obey the traffic light signaling him to stop, Durodola’s official car ran into a Honda Accord Sedan conveying Soares, her cousin, and two kids, including a three-year old, at the Okesa area of Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, on Monday. She also said Durodola disembarked from the car and verbally attacked her.

“All of a sudden we saw this mini-van from nowhere. My children started screaming. He almost hit us. And when we asked him why he drove like that, the next thing we heard was, ‘You are a stupid person. Park!’” Soares told FIJ.

When Soares’ cousin, who drove her car, upbraided Durodola for his actions, the political appointee hit him with the car door.

“I said, ‘Sir, you are wrong and you are still assaulting me’, and then he picked it up from there”. He kept on saying: ‘You are mad. Do you know who I am? I am the SSA to the Governor on Security Matters.'”

By her account, Durodola went back into his car to retrieve a walkie talkie with which he invited security agents. Turning again to the woman, he threatened her with arrest while vituperating.  

“I will molest you. You will sleep in a cell, today, you harlot, prostitute,” he was quoted as saying.

Soares made an attempt to leave the scene, but Durodola blocked her way with his car, keeping her on the spot until the arrival of officers of the Nigerian Army sent on his orders. The soldiers ordered the already assaulted woman into their truck but she resisted, demanding for the warrant which authorized her arrest.  

“Madam, we are respecting you. If it was a guy, we know what we would do,” a soldier told Soares, who further resisted attempts to get hold of her car key.

Durodola Threatens Reporter, Calls Him ‘Idiot’

On his Facebook wall, Remi Koleoso, an Editor at News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), had posted a video of Durodola’s invitation to soldiers at the assault scene, only to get a phone call from him the following morning. 

“You don’t think before you report”, FIJ heard Durodola say in an audio of the phone conversation. “This is going to be the first and the last time you will do it to me.”

Durodola, who ended the call by brandishing the journalist “idiot”, threatened legal action against the reporter and alleged that Soares damaged his car. He said fixing it would cost him not less than N320,000.

However, Soares, refuted the claim, saying: “If I had damaged his car, especially to the level he claimed, there’s no way my own car would have gone unscratched.”

Durodola’s History of Assaults

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Sola-Durodola.jpg
Shola Durodola has a history of abuse of power.

Febisola Soares’ case is not Durodola’s first assault story. It is neither his second nor third.

Yaya Korode, a resident of Ado-Ekiti, recalled his 2018 encounter with Durodola to FIJ.

“I went in company of two friends to pick up a guest coming from Lagos, and then it started raining, so we went into the mini-pavillion at the governor’s office,” Korode said.

“Durodola drove in and one of his boys asked us to leave the place. But I told him it was a public place and we had the right to be there. And then the man himself approached us with so much fury, bringing out two cutlasses from under his ‘babariga’.

“He said he could kill us and nothing would happen. ‘I will show you I’m in the corridors of power’. We had to run for our lives.”

Yaya told FIJ said that after the matter went public, a representative of the governor invited and begged him. But when Durodola met one of the two friends with him at the pavilion, he threatened to deal with him for reporting the incident to the governor.

According to a source, Durodola, as a member of Ekiti State COVID-19 Task Force, assaulted a female essential worker on her way home from Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital (EKSUTH), where she worked as a nurse. At about the same period, he also allegedly beat up a man on night duty to the point of being hospitalised.

After the trending of a video of him making a mockery of a father who reported his son to the authorities for violating the state government’s stay-at-home order in the heat of the pandemic, Governor Kayode Fayemi announced his suspension.

A government insider, however, revealed that Durodola continued to get his salary while the purported suspension was on. The SSA was also seen playing active government roles few months later, without an official public announcement of his reinstatement.

On why the governor seems to treat him like a sacred cow, FIJ gathered that Durodola was fingered alongside six others in the celebrated murder of Omolafe Aderiye which happened shortly after the 2014 governorship election in the state. Aderiye, a political associate of the then governor-elect Ayo Fayose, was shot dead by unknown gunmen at his private motor park in the Ijigbo area of Ado-Ekiti.   

In November 2014, during the second tenure of Ayo Fayose, the seven accused persons, including Durodola, were charged for Aderiye’s murder and were not released until January 2018, after three years in prison custody.

Durodola’s current appointment and the governor’s refusal to take drastic punitive actions against him are seen as compensation for those years in detention.

Replying to an SMS to his phone, Durodola said he called security men on Soares because of the insecurity in the area.

“I called security men to come help because there’s no security in the area where the matter happened,” he said.

On a written petition against him by Soares to Fayemi, Durodola said that he had also sent his own petition.

“My lawyer already sent my own petition to Mr. Governor and copied the attorney-general,” he said.

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Published 19th Jan, 2021

By Damilola Ayeni

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