April 25, 2024

Akintoye to Afenifere: Yoruba Nation wants self-determination, not restructuring

Akintoye, Yoruba Leader, Amotekun

Adebanji Akintoye

By Laolu Elijah

IBADAN—LEADER of the Ilana Omo Oodua, Professor Banji Akintoye has disagreed with leaders of the pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, on restructuring saying the Yoruba Nation wants self-determination not restructuring.

He said this when he was featured on Arise television’s ‘The Morning Show’.

The professor of History who repeatedly said the goal to achieve his Yoruba Nation dreams will surely come to pass argued that if restructuring is implemented, the same Fulani herders who have allegedly killed more than 29,000 Yoruba will remain in Nigeria and continue their atrocities.

He wondered why there was so much noise about agitation for Yoruba Nation and people look away from Fulani who threatened to take over the seat of power.

While acknowledging the role of Afenifere in restructuring, he noted that the only solution to the senseless killing, maiming, raping and kidnapping of Yoruba was to get out of the country.

His words: “Our fathers in Afenifere are doing the right thing talking about restructuring so that we can go back and live our own life the way we used to live it prosperously. But we, another group of people larger than they are now saying self-determination is the answer not restructuring why because when you restructure you’re still in Nigeria and those people who are killing, maiming and raping our women and daughters remain in Nigeria.

“The only solution to that is to separate from them; to have our own country where we can make laws and determine who to admit. But if we restructure, they still have the right to come to Nigeria and still perpetrate the evils they do.”

Taking exception to the violence displayed by Onitiri-Abiola’s group, who swooped on the Oyo State Government House, he said: “The ideas of the self-determination movement and Yoruba Agitation led by Modupe Onitiri-Abiola are not the same. We started the movement for the liberation of the Yoruba Nation under the existing law of the international community. People don’t seem to recognize the rights of indigenous people that there is a law that every nation that permits any nation that wants to separate from a nation they belong to now to do so.

“The movement that I lead is intellectually sophisticated. No single member of the movement, even though we are in millions, will do what Mrs Abiola-Onitiri did. She and her people are on their own. They are not part of us and we are not part of them. Our struggle for self-determination has been pursued peacefully. We started in 2019 and this is 2024. That is roughly five years now and no single record of violence. We’ll achieve self-determination peacefully.”