By Dapo Akinrefon
THE Aareonakakanfo of Yoruba land, Iba Gani Adams, yesterday, charged all Yoruba people to return to their roots, saying Yoruba ancestors and deities are punishing the race with bad leaders because they abandoned their tradition.
Speaking at the 2022 edition of Ifa Festival in Akute, Ogun state, Adams stated that the introduction of the two prominent religions in Yoruba land had made Yoruba people abandon their tradition and culture, leading them to poverty, retrogression and loss.
He admitted also that the Yoruba people have the potentials and wherewithal to be the leading race in the world.
He said: “In the past years, we had the best in leadership. We had the best economy. Those that led us focused more on our well-being and what could impact positively on society. We had good leaders who loved us; leaders, who feared God and believed that service to humanity was service to God.
“But things changed in the early 70s when the two prominent religions took the centre stage and we lost touch with the divine intermediary.
“Since then, we have lost the essence of our being. The spiritual lapses and missing links have, in all ways, affecting our present lives.
“Today, we suffer from leadership failures. There is disunity, poverty, and a lack of cohesion and enmity in the land.
“We have abandoned our tradition and heritage and things are no longer the same with us. Cases of kidnapping, ritual killings, and robberies are prevalent in our society because nobody is interested in going back to our roots and traditional ways of doing things.
“And sadly, our ancestors and the deities are punishing us for ignoring them.
“Today, they give us bad leaders in exchange for the good ones we had in the past. None of our leaders today are in the same mould as those that led us during the times of the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo. Our leaders no longer care about our well-being. They don’t care whether we live or not.
“They steal, rob us in the open and embezzle our commonwealth and later leave us to die in penury.
“The Igbo are mostly Catholic, yet they would never ignore or abandon their tradition.
“The Benin people, Niger Deltans and Ijaw are predominantly Christians, but they would not forgo their tradition and their ancestors.
“The Yoruba now live on our past glories. There is a huge gap and missing link between us and our deities.”