Olufunke Ayotunde Akindele-Bello popularly known as Funke Akindele or Jenifa, is a Nigerian film actress, politician and producer
Funke Akindele, a Nollywood actress and PDP deputy governorship candidate in Lagos State, was chased out of the Ikosi fruit market by suspected thugs while campaigning on Tuesday.
In an interview with NAN, the PDP governorship candidate, Abdul-Azeez Adediran, popularly known as Jandor, confirmed that their campaign was cut short due to the incident.
During a meeting with the chief Imam of Ketu Central Mosque, Jandor confirmed that a member of the security team had been stabbed, and that others, including journalists, had been injured.
He did, however, confirm that the actress left the campaign train while the team continued to move around the council’s streets.
Jandor cried out in October 2022 about similar situations that had occurred repeatedly in various local government areas since he began his tour of 245 wards.
In an interview with PREMIUM TIMES, PDP Lagos spokesperson Hakeem Amode claimed that the local government chairperson sent the hoodlums to disrupt their campaign.
“Normally when we go to the market, Funke Akindele goes to the market to speak with the Market women, and we know it is our right to be able to talk freely, a campaign to anybody,” he explained.
He claimed that Abolanle Bada, the Chairperson of the Ikosi LCDA, sent thugs to intimidate them.
“The local government chairperson came into the market, used her car to block it, and brought a bunch of thugs to attack us in Kosofe local government, which is very, very sad; it is unbelievable that we are not allowed to speak freely,” he said.
“Under the new electoral act, we are free to campaign anywhere; this is Lagos, where we should be able to talk to everybody without intimidation or discrimination. That should never have happened,” he added.
He also stated that this was not the first time this had occurred.
More than hoodlums
During the market campaigns, Mr Hakeem revealed that the intimidation had escalated to the point of harassment.
“Those we gave our campaign materials to, they have gone to evict them from their house and ask them not to come to the market; they came crying to our campaign offices. These are market women who paid for the market stalls they use.”
“Why should we descend to this level of harassment and intimidation of our members? Even market ladies.”
He stated once more that they had been attacked in other markets.
Mr Hakeem claimed that the team had no choice but to retreat and join him in Jandor, where he was campaigning, in order to prevent the situation from escalating further.
The PRO claimed once more that the Chairperson of the Ikosi LCDA was responsible for the thuggery on Tuesday, and he had video evidence.
When PREMIUM TIMES contacted the All Progressive Congress (APC) in Lagos spokesperson, Seye Oladejo, about the allegations, he denied knowledge of the alleged event.
“The PDP people are well known for their wild allegations; if people were attacked, I think it is what the security agencies would be interested in; I don’t think taking it to the media is the solution,” he said.
“As far as we’re concerned, we’re not in the business of violence; our party is aiming for victory, so why should we be distracted by people who can’t even keep their own house in order and want to be in government?”
Mr Oladejo claimed that the APC is not under any election pressure and advised any party that claims to have been attacked to take the matter to court.
In July 2022, the actress, popularly known as Jenifa, was officially unveiled as Jandor’s running mate in her hometown of Ikorodu.
Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, Kolawole Vaughan, Adenike Shobajo, and Rasheed Teslim-Balogun were among the five nominees chosen by Jandor.
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