By Dayo Johnson Akure
AFENIFERE, a Yoruba socio political Organisation last night endorsed President Goodluck Jonathan for second term in office.
Publicity Secretary of the Organisation Yinka Odumakin said this in Akure while briefing newsmen after a meeting President Jonathan held with the leaders of the Organisation.
The meeting took place at the residence of the National Chairman of the Organisation, Chief Reuben Fasoranti
President Jonathan was in the state as part of his state wide presidential campaign to shore up support for his second term ambition.
Odumakin said that the leaders of the organisation decided to give their support to the President because he “convoked the National Conference and is ready to implement the report.
Odumakin said the group was convinced about the commitment of the president to the National Confab and the implementation of the report .
Afenifere, he added “believed that the confab is the only thing that can liberate the nation.
Odumakin said the president informed them at the meeting that Yoruba were the one that were in the forefront of the clamour for the confab.
Also speaking, Ondo State Governor, Dr Olusegun Mimiko said what Afenifere did was an unequivocal endorsement of the president.
Dr Mimiko said Afenifere expressed believe in the transformation agenda of the president describing it as systematic and strategic for the development of the nation.
The governor who was asked by the president to also speak with newsmen said that the organisation believed that the President transformation agenda was not a fluke.
Also speaking Chief Olu Falae corroborated the decision of the Organisation saying that the president has shown commitment to lead the nation out of slavery.
Meanwhile, the organisation at their meeting earlier said that if the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC goes on to conduct the Febuary 14 general election with almost 30million voters cards yet to distributed, the result of the election will not be credible.
Also, the Organisation called on Nigerians not to vote for any candidate who is not in support of the implementation of the National Conference report.
Rising from an over four hour meeting in Akure, the Country home of their Chairman Chief Reuben Fasoranti, they said that “as at today, over 15 million voters out of the one collected have not received their cards.
Its Publicity secretary Yinka Odumakin said ” This is 54 million. There are 14 million voters cards that are yet to arrive the country. If we put them together it is almost half of the total electorate that are yet to collect their voter’s cards.
Odumakin while reading the Communique said “The assurance by the INEC chairman that to distribute card day to the election is not reassuring. If you have failed to do it before now, what is the assurance that he is going to do it now?
“We want to warn that any election conducted on the basis of disenfranchising almost half of the electorate, the outcome will not be credible or acceptable.
According to him the “meeting viewed with seriousness the share incompetence on the part of INEC, the INEC that wanted to create 30, 000 polling units few weeks to the election has yet to distribute almost 30 million voter’s cards.
” When you look at the table INEC has given, what they tell us is that in each state, this is the PVC received hiding the total number of registered voters.
“The constitution says election should hold not earlier than 150 days to handover date and not later than 30 days. February 14 INEC has chosen, for us may 29 is sacrosanct, there is no controversy over this.
” Within those days between February 14 and 30 days to May 29, INEC has a window to make sure that most voters are not disenfranchised. If INEC is able to give all registered voters their PVC before February 14, all well and good
“On the 2015 general election, as far as Afenifere is concerned, the presidential election is to decide between two options, freedom or slavery.
” We have elected to choose freedom, freedom from bondage, internal enslavement and internal colonialism that holds most Nigerians down under the bastion of domination and we are convinced that the 2014 national conference report has laid the basis for the proper restructuring of the country.
“The most important change that Nigeria desire this time is restructural change.
“The Change that ignores the restructuring of Nigeria is not a change. Most of the issues that are confronting us, the issue insecurity, corruption have their link with the faulty constitution that we have and to change the constitution is the most important change that we need.
“Also, we want to warn in Yoruba land that we should be careful of those who promise change and do not believe in the restructuring of Nigeria and those who boycotted National Conference and described it as diversion.
Leaders that attended the meeting include governor Olusegun Mimiko of ondo State, two former governors of Osun and Ogun state Iyiola Omisore and Gbenga Daniel, Chief Ayo Adebanjo,
Sehinde Arogbofa, Chief Olu Falae, Supo Sonibare amonsgt other
“Afenifere believe that election is a democratic contest about party programme and not about using terror to frighten them into submission that the use of terror to demand for the mandate of the people must be discouraged not to reward anybody that tries to terrorise them to access power.
“The 2014 national conference has become a campaign issue. Anybody that did not participate in it or does not believe in it does not love our people.
“They want to drag them into slavery. With the report of 2014, we believe we have crossed Jordan, we are yet to get to promise land but we should not be sent to Egypt.