The leader of the Pan-Yoruba group, Afenifere, Pa Ayo Adebanjo, has reiterated that Yorubas are not leaving Nigeria, noting that all that they clamor for is a restructuring.
The 93-year-old Afenifere leader stated this at the burial ceremony of Yinka Odumakin, the late spokesperson of the group.
Adebanjo, who could not control his emotion during his tribute, said but for an omnipotent God, he wondered why he is the one paying tribute to Odumakin, who was just 54 while he, an older man, still lives.
“It is so painful that I am paying tribute to my grandson. It is against the culture of Yoruba land. Instead of him paying tribute to me I am paying tribute to him. Who am I to question God? God is powerful. How can he leave a man of 93 and take a man of 54, God does His work the way He likes, He knows why and how He will comfort us.”
The Afenifere leader said he considers late Odumakin a true lieutenant who fought against Fulani imperialism in the region. He said the late spokesman was never scared of speaking the truth to power.
“He did great works for Yoruba land, the progressives and Nigeria. He was a rare gem not common among this generation. Yinka was consistent in fighting for the underdog, against injustice, he was an Awoist to the core. I recognize Yinka unapologetically as an able lieutenant for fighting against Fulani imperialism in whatever form.
“If you want to remember Yinka, fight against this present Fulani imperialism and let nobody deceive that he is joining any secession. We are not fighting for any secession.
“Like Gov. Fayemi said, we’re not secessionist. We are the people calling for restructuring to consolidate Nigerian unity. Anything outside that is ‘Fulanization’.
The Afenifere leader said President Buhari should be considered as a major enemy of Nigeria’s unity as long as he continues to turn deaf ears to calls for restructuring. He said continued delays was responsible for the misactions of Sunday Igboho and Nnamdi Kanu, both secessionist fighters from the East and West respectively.
“The Igbohos, the Nnamdi Kanus will continue to be encouraged as far as restructuring is delayed. Those who are friends and colleagues of President Buhari should tell him that his greatest friends in the country are Afenifere and those preaching restructuring.”
Pa Adebanjo said further delay is “giving impetus to the Igbohos and Kanus.
“We have worked for the unity of this country, even when these secessionist fighters were still in school.”
The Afenifere leader noted that the West was not calling on the Fulanis to leave the region but noted that the eviction notice was to criminally-minded Fulani herdsmen who have been fingered in perpetrating evil like raping women and girls, destruction of farmlands, killing, and kidnapping.
“Which Yoruba man has gone to Kaduna to plant cocoa just because he has the right to do so. We are not fools. We want the criminals among them to go home. And tell to make bold to arrest the criminals and command them to stop giving them a bad name.”
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