By Fred Ezeh
Retired Assistant Inspector General (AIG) of Police, Mr Ayotunde Johnson Ogunsakin, is in a good mood. He has genuine reason for being in such state of mind. The last few days have been dedicated by his friends, relatives and associates in Abuja and Ikere, Ekiti State, his hometown for honouring him.
Ogunsakin retired from the force in the third quarter of this year. He quit police two years before his due time because of the appointment of the incumbent Inspector General of Police. But for him and his friends the basis of their celebration is that between 1982 and 2016 he was in the force, he left legacies that are exemplary.
Governor Ayo Fayose described him as a man with a large heart. Although he admitted that Ogunsakin was not his friend, he explained that he had to honour him because on several fronts, he has made Ekiti proud. He told the crowd that it was heartwarming that the retired AIG served and left the police untainted, describing him as a shining example to other indigenes of the state. He lamented that a man with such recorded should have been appointed IGP, predicting that better days await him.
Former IGP, MD Abubakar, captured it this way: “Congratulations on a well deserved retirement for your selfless services to Nigeria as a police officer and a gentleman. I applaud you for your years of service and achievements. Few have worked as hard as you have.”
To Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN: “Ogunsakin is a very loving, charismatic, amiable, handsome, brilliant, resourceful, thoughtful and irresistible personality qua gentleman.”
At the service at St Peter’s Anglican Church, Oke ‘Kere, Ikere-Ekiti, the presiding priest, Rev E.A Adeyemo, described the retired police officer as a man of peace who never used his vantage position to intimidate or harass indigenes of the state.
He urged those in authority to emulate Ogunsakin especially in the area of using their position to impact positively on the people. After the exhortation, Ogunsakin was joined by his wife, Chinyere and friends to dance and thank God for serving meritoriously.
Also in attendance to rejoice with him were market women, traders, the academia , students and even children. Tribal organizations like Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Tiv community and Arewa decorated Ogunsakin with unique attires and performed cultural exhibitions.
Ogunsakin praised and thanked God for preserving him and his family all through the decades he served in the force. He relived several instances where God intervened and guided and guarded him out of temptations and difficult situations. One of such was a battle with armed robbers at Satellite Town, Lagos, where his team prevailed at the end of the day.
He admitted that policemen are criticized all over the world but stressed that no society can do without police. He said he served in places and areas people dread but God saved him from all dangers. He urged the society to respect police and other security agents.
Ogunsakin held sensitive positions in the force which brought him face to face with influential and dreaded Nigerians. He served as director of operations in the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and ICPC. Before serving as police commissioner in Rivers State, where cult war held sway, he had also served as Interpol commander.
He was transferred to Bauchi State as AIG at the heat of the Boko Haram battle.
It was an event that both Ogunsakin and those around him will not erase from their minds in many years to come.