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Let’s Restructure or We Have Oduduwa Republic – Yoruba Nation

Since the struggle for the actualization of the June 12, 1993 presidential election won by Bashorun M. K. O. Abiola, Yoruba leaders, irrespective of their political beliefs had never been this united on an issue.

In unison, they spoke with one voice, demanding that the Yoruba nation is for immediate restructuring of Nigeria along regional lines and a federal constitution as against the 1999 constitution, which they described as “unitary” and the root cause of socio-political and economic crises bedevilling the country.

Though some interest groups would have loved the agitation for a Yoruba Republic to commence, but the majority, who canvassed restructuring into regionalism that will weaken the centre, suffocated advocates of secession.

The large turnout at the summit held at Adamasingba Stadium Ibadan underscored the seriousness of various political and interest groups in Yoruba nations in their quest for a restructured Nigeria, which they reasoned was long overdue.

The summit was devoid of politics and religion. It was a summit that brought the Special Adviser to the Vice President on Political Matters, Babafemi Ojudu, sitting beside former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, and they exchanged banters; Ekiti State Governor Ayodele Fayose’s position was not different from that of Governor Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Governor Ibikunke Amosun (Ogun), Governor Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Governor Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo) and that of Governor Aminwunmi Ambode (Lagos), who sent representatives to the summit.

Besides, the Summit brought together over 30 monarchs led by Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitan Adeyeye, the retired Archbishop of Methodist Church of Nigeria, Reverend Ayo Ladigbolu and Sat Guru Maharaji,  Odua factional leaders, Dr Frederick Faseun and Otunba Gani Adams, Afenifere leader, Chief Ayo Fasonranti and leader of Afenifere Renewal Group, Dr Wale Oshun.

The convener of the summit, Dr Kunle Olajide who marvelled at the large turnout of people at the summit expressed concerns that Nigeria is drifting towards precipice if patriots did not stand up for a thorough surgical operation to give a new lease of life to the country.

He noted: “The Ship of the Nigerian State is floundering. It is in fact heading towards a titanic rock and Nigerians from all parts of the country must rise up to halt the drift. All Nigerians must speak up. Silence cannot be golden at these times and silence in this time is crime against humanity.

“In a heterogeneous country like Nigeria, nation building is an unending process of negotiation. Our elders in Yorubaland motivated by a burning desire to save the sinking ship of Nigeria State put the planning committee of this summit together to arrange this historic event.

“I want to thank our elders for their patriotism and commitment to building a just and equitable Nigerian State. “This is a coalition of Yoruba interest groups who are committed to championing the birth of a new Nigeria. Presently, by the fake constitution we are operating, Nigeria has been put in a consumption mode, sharing and sharing and not baking the cake. We are determined to move Nigeria from this consumption mode to a productive mode.

“Change is often the most difficult scenario to achieve because human beings generally resist change, even if it is good for them. We are here gathered to begin the process that will put a halt to this drifting. The plenary leaders and members of the planning committee are under no illusion that this struggle for change will be easily achieved; we realise it may be a long haul but we are prepared for it.”

The summit predicated its demand for restructuring of Nigeria on the southward trend of development in the Yoruba nation since 1966, when the military struck and suspended the 1963 constitution, which they described as a true reflection of the wishes and aspirations of different ethnic groups that made up the country.

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