Army assures of safety as Afenifere disowns Yoruba Nation agitators 

Afenifere, the Pan-Yoruba socio-cultural and socio-political organisation, has disowned agitators for the Democratic Republic of the Yoruba, insisting Yoruba still remain an important component of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

In a statement Sunday by its National Publicity Secretary, Comrade Jare Ajayi, the body condemned the invasion of the Oyo state government secretariat Ibadan by the Yoruba Nation agitators Saturday, and demanded for a thorough investigation of the incident.

Condemning the invasion in its entirety, Afenifere noted that those involved in the invasion “did not act in the interest of the Yorubas whom they alleged to be representing. There is the need for a thorough of the incident with a view to ensuring that perpetrators and those behind the scheme face the wrath of the law maximally so as to serve as deterrence to others.

“There is no such thing as Democratic Republic of the Yoruba; Yoruba is an important component of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. And as is well-known, there cannot be a sovereign republic within an extant sovereign republic.”

 Afenifere added: “At the moment, Yoruba are indigenous in Ekiti, Lagos, Ogun, Ondo, Osun and Oyo States and in parts of Kwara, Kogi, Delta and Edo States of Nigeria, just as they are found in some other parts of the world.

“There is a lot of disfunctionality in the way Nigeria was being run. This has not just begun though as it is a cumulative thing inherited from previous administrations. But solutions to the shortcomings do not lie in violent divisions. Rather, what we should strive for is how the perceived wrongs in the country can be righted.

“Afenifere is of the strong view that President Bola Tinubu administration has taken steps to rejig Nigeria in a manner that would make the country become one that every citizen would be proud of soonest. Restructuring the country is a sure way of accelerating this.

“Afenifere strongly believes that when Restructuring is effected with constituent entities allowed to be in control of their own affairs, Nigeria will become beneficial to everyone.

“This is why we are relentless in our agitation for Restructuring!” it added.

Lashing out at those involved in the invasion, Afenifere said the “manner by which they embarked on their misconceived mission clearly indicated that they did not apply sense whatsoever, adding, ” how can a person or group of persons think that invading a State House of Assembly is tantamount to the creation of a Federal Republic?

“Genuine Yorubas normally think things through before they take actions, especially a fundamental action such as forming or declaring a nation. Yoruba don’t act that way. Rather, they apply wisdom and intellectualism in major steps they want to take. They apply tact. They demonstrate finesse and shun violence as much as possible. Examples of this attitude abound – going by their reactions to some major issues that occurred in the country in recent times.”

…Army assures on safety, security  

 In a related development, the Nigeria Army has asked the general public to remain calm and vigilant over the attack on Oyo State Secretariat Agodi, Ibadan by suspected Yoruba Nation agitators. 

 In a statement by Director Army Public Relations Major-General Onyema Nwachukwu, the Nigeria Army emphasised that the “safety and security of the citizenry remain a priority”, adding, “We will continue to work tirelessly to maintain peace and order in the region”.

“This is to notify the general public that today Saturday, 13 April, 2024, sequel to the report of an attack on the State Secretariat Agodi, Ibadan, Oyo State, troops promptly responded to the incident and had contact with adherents of the Yoruba Nation dressed in foreign military camouflage with berets and armed with dangerous weapons in buses and motorbikes,” it said.  

“Upon encountering their own troops, the Yoruba nation adherents engaged the troops in a shootout. Troops, utilizing superior firepower, successfully subdued the attackers, who subsequently retreated in disarray.

“As a result of this engagement, nine members of the irredentist group were apprehended, while one Semi Automatic Pump Action rifle and ammunition were recovered. Currently, troops are on the track of the fleeing adherents, and the situation is under control.

“We assure members of the public that all necessary measures are being taken to ensure the safety and security of the general area.

“We urge the public to remain calm and vigilant, and to report any suspicious activity to the appropriate security agencies. The safety and security of the citizenry remain a priority, as we will continue to work tirelessly to maintain peace and order in the region,” the army further assured.