By Adeola Badru
The leader of the umbrella body of Yoruba self-determination groups, Ilana Omo Oodua (IOO), Professor Emeritus Banji Akintoye, has called on Yoruba people home and in the diaspora to begin mass protests.
The renowned historian stated this in his reaction to the reported invasion of the Oyo State Residence of Yoruba Nation Agitator, Chief Sunday Igboho, in Ibadan, at the early hours of Thursday.
In a statement personally signed by him and made available to newsmen by his Communications Manager, Mr. Maxwell Adeleye, Professor Akintoye alleged that the attack was carried out by the elements of the Nigerian Army who were accompanied by International Terrorists hired by the Nigerian State.
“I call on our people across at home and in the diaspora to immediately begin mass protests in front of palaces in Yoruba land, and opposite the offices of the United Nations, European Union, British, French and United States Governments.”
He also alleged that the assailants were all dressed in Military Uniform and spoke the French language fluently.
Prof. Akintoye further alleged that the gunmen killed seven occupants in the building and whisked Igboho’s wife and several others away.
He said: “This is an emergency response to an emergency matter by Ilana Omo Oodua.
“Around 1 am today Thursday 1st July 2021, the Ibadan, Oyo State Residence of one of the leading men in our struggle for self-determination in Yoruba Land, Chief Sunday Adeyemo fondly called Sunday Igboho was unfortunately attacked by gunmen.
“I want to say to the whole world that the attack was carried out by the elements of the Nigerian Army who were accompanied by international terrorists hired by the Nigerian State.
“The assailants spoke French Language fluently. Seven people were killed by the attackers, with their corpses taken away. Scores of people, including the wife of Chief Ighoho, were also taken away by the gunmen.
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“Let me state without any fear or intimidation that the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration was responsible for the war that has just been declared against the peace-loving people of Yoruba Land.
“We have been peaceful from the inception of this struggle. We have adhered with both the Nigerian and International Laws guiding the agitation for Self-Determination.
“All our agitations have been peaceful, orderly, and lawfully executed. We have commended the officers of the Nigerian Police many times for being professional in their modus of operations in relating to our protests and rallies for Self-Determination in Yoruba cities.
“Therefore, I say on behalf of the Yoruba people that this attack on Chief Ighoho’s House was unnecessary, unfortunate, wicked, callous, cruel, irresponsible, illegal, and atrocious.
“We are holding the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration responsible for this barbaric attack. This is a declaration of war against peace-loving people.
“We want to confirm again that the Pro-Yoruba Nation rally scheduled to hold on Saturday July 3rd, in Lagos will proceed as scheduled.”