By Biodun Busari
The paramount ruler of Iwoland, His Royal Majesty Abdulrosheed Akanbi has urged the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu to reconcile with aggrieved Yoruba leaders, stakeholders and politicians ahead of the 2023 general elections.
In his statement entitled ‘2023: Forgive Each Other, Oluwo Urges Yoruba Leaders, Politicians’, the Osun monarch appealed to Tinubu to avoid bitterness among Yoruba leaders which cost the presidential ambitions of the late old Premier of the Western Region, Dr Obafemi Awolowo and the late business mogul, Chief MKO Abiola.
Oba Akanbi asked all Yoruba leaders to forgive one another and end the rancour among them, as he reiterated his support for Tinubu to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari next year.
The traditional ruler said these in a statement made available to Vanguard on Monday, stressing that the appeal becomes necessary to have a united Yoruba family ahead of the 2023 general election.
He noted such a move will make the election a free ride and write a new history for the Southwest region by promoting political unity and understanding among themselves for the former Lagos state governor to contest and win.
The statement read: “I call on Yoruba leaders, stakeholders and politicians to write a new history of hope, brighter future and positive promises by forgiving each other. Without forgiveness, relationships will not give birth to promising children. I’m making this appeal with my crown to endure, entertain each other’s differences and cut the political curse on the Yorubas.
“The late sage, Obafemi Awolowo tried. Then the late business tycoon, Moshood Kasimawo Abiola made a trial and won democracy for us. The same mistake must not be repeated again. This is not about political parties. It is natural to offend each other but divine to forgive.
“The chance of one of us becoming the President of Nigeria is bright and promising. He might have offended you just as you also might have offended someone. Let’s heal the wound of enmity to move on and faster. This is the last chance should we want our children to forgive us.
“I enjoin the APC Presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to approach the aggrieved Yoruba leaders, stakeholders and politicians for genuine reconciliation and harmonisation. The sacrifice is for all of us to make. The move should cut across party lines. This is a collective project to sustain the unity of Nigeria. It should jump political party affiliation.
“The candidate is experienced, promising and virile to govern Nigeria on merit. He is a pride to Nigeria who must be encouraged by people of all strata to further display his administrative prowess as done when he was the governor of Lagos State.”