By Dapo Akinrefon
LAGOS—THERE seems to be division within the leadership of the South West geo-political zone over the 2015 general elections.
This is because two leaders from the zone are proposing separate summits in Lagos and Oyo States respectively.
The two summit are expected to discuss among other issues, the implementation of the report of the national conference and the future of the region.
Leading the Lagos summit is Governor of Ondo State, Dr Olusegun Mimiko.
The summit entitled “Into tomorrow and beyond,” will feature former delegates to the National Conference who will converge on Thursday, March19 at the Airport Hotel in Lagos for a post national conference summit.
Vanguard gathered, however, taht leaders of the Pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere and other presumed supporters of President Goodluck Jonathan from the zone, will be in attendance at the Lagos summit.
The Lagos summit is expected to canvass and mobilise the electorate to cast their votes for the president during the March 28 presidential elections.
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Similarly, the Yoruba Assembly has concluded plans to hold a Pan-Yoruba Summit which aims to situate and present the common aspirations of the Yoruba nation for the future.
Projected as perceived antagonists of the president, convener of the summit, General Alani Akinrinade (rtd), in a statement said: “We as a people, the Yoruba people, had been central to shaping the nation’s direction of travel and we must return to this position to ensure the actualisation of the development aspirations of our people within the Nigeria space.”
Recall that Akinrinade, a former Chief of General Staff was also a delegate to the National Conference held last year in Abuja.
The summit, entitled: “Yoruba people: Our aspirations and minimum demands from the central government of Nigeria”, is scheduled to hold at the Parliament building, State secretariat in Ibadan on Thursday, 19 March, 2015.
Dignitaries expected at the summit include: Yoruba Obas and leaders of thought, Yoruba sub-ethnic groups in Nigeria, Yoruba professional and vocational groups, Yoruba industrialists, retired Yoruba military and judiciary officers, former and current state governors of the South West states, former and serving members of the National Assembly from the South west, eminent Yoruba professionals and academics, Yoruba self-determination groups, Yoruba in diaspora, women and youth leaders of Yoruba land, Yoruba religious leaders and Yoruba leaders from across the states of Ekiti, Lagos, Ondo, Ogun, Osun, Kwara, Kogi and Itsekiri kith and kin of Delta State.
An official of the Afenifere Renewal Group, ARG, told Vanguard that leaders of ARG will not be in attendance for the Lagos summit.
When probed by Vanguard to find out if ARG will be attending the Lagos summit, the official said “we are not going to attend the Lagos summit because they know the agenda they are pursuing while we have our own agenda.”