By Adeola Badru
A socio-political interest group, Ebedi Frontliners, Iseyin (EFI), has called on Governor Seyi Makinde to intervene in what they termed ‘a brewing religious crisis’ in Iseyin town before it resulted to killings and vandalisation of property.
The group said this in a letter they sent to the governor Makinde which copies were made available to journalists on Tuesday, making reference to a court summon in which Aseyin of Iseyin, Oba Ganiy Adekunle, the traditional council of Iseyin Local Government and the leader of Oro sect in Iseyin were respondents.
In the summon, the Islamic group was seeking an injunction to stop the celebration of Oro Festival which had been slated for September 22, 2019.
“Iseyin community has been known with the celebration of the Oro festival among other traditional celebrations, but during the Oro festival, women were not to be seen in the public to avoid seeing the Oro masquerade,” the letter added.
The Publicity Director of the group, Alhaji Segun Fasasi said the group heard that the Islamic sect went to court to seek an injunction to stop the celebration of Oro festival, adding that the move was an attempt to create a crisis in the peaceful community.
However, members of Ebedi Frontliners urged the governor to look into the case and put all security agencies on the alert to avert possible breakdown of law and order by those they described as intolerant of other people’s religion.
“Our attention was called to a brewing religious crisis in Iseyin community recently as an Islamic religious sect was said to have approached a court in Ibadan, the State capital to get an injunction for the purpose of preventing the adherents of Oro to celebrate their annual Oro festival.
“Sir, we heard this action was premised on the fact that the Oro traditional worshippers have picked 22nd of September as the day that was sanctioned by the Royal father, Oba (Dr.) Abd-Ganiy Adekunle Oloogunebi (Ajinese 1), Aseyin of Iseyin and other stakeholders, regarding security issues.”
“We write as a socio-political organization that believes in peace as a pre-requisite for growth and social development and as well share the lofty idea that Your Excellency, Makinde’s administration holds high and sacred so that Oyo State will not go back to the days of the dark.”
“It is a known fact that Nigeria is a secular State and allows for freedom of religion, but in the years past, the people of the community have witnessed violent attacks by some religious zealots who claimed to be fighting for Islam against the Oro worshipers, resulting in loss of lives and valuable property.”
“We will be happy if your administration makes haste to pre-empt any plan to cause havoc in the community, which may lead to loss of lives and destruction of properties as our people have been enjoying relative peace since the emergence of your administration,” Fasasi said. The group pledged their loyalty to the progress of the state which they, said was being witnessed by all and sundry in the areas of education, commerce and quality healthcare delivery.