UNGA: Yoruba group petitions UN, others against pro-Igboho groups

A coalition under the aegis of the Yoruba Appraisal Forum (YAF) has petitioned the United Nations, its five permanent members, the European Union (EU), the African Union (AU) and other powerful countries across the world over a plan by the umbrella body of Yoruba self-determination groups, Ilana Omo Oodua, to present a petition against the Nigerian government at the 76th General Assembly of the UN.

YAF, which in the petition urged the UN and the five Super Power countries to bar Ilana Omo Oodua and its allies from attending the UNGA to present its petition against the federal government of Nigeria, added that “the ultimate objective of this plan by the group is to achieve nothing salutary or beneficial to the people of Nigeria but to further their evil design to undermine and bring down the country and the incumbent administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, out of sheer malice over the forthcoming 2023 general elections.”

The YAF petition is entitled; “Stop plan by Ilana Omo Oodua to attend/petition 76th United Nations General Assembly to seek global support for its violent agitation for Yorubaland secession from Nigeria.”

The YAF petition signed by its National Coordinator, Adeshina Animashaun, and made available to newsmen Monday in Abuja, accused Ilana Omo Oodua of funding “the violent activities of the self-styled Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Igboho, currently undergoing trial in the Benin Republic for gun-running following his recent arrest at that country’s airport while attempting to flee.”

It accused Ilana Omo Oodua and its allies of stockpiling arms and ammunition for its alleged plan to eventually confront the federal government in its bid to achieve breaking up of the Nigerian state under the guise of fighting for an independent Yoruba Nation.

Prof Banji-Akintoye-led Ilana Omo Oodua had recently announced its plan to attend the 76th UNGA scheduled for September to present a petition to the global organisation over its demand for a separate and independent Yoruba Nation.

The forum alleged that Ilana Omo Oodua “is merely using Igboho to destabilise Nigeria through his nefarious, unpatriotic and violent agitation for an independent Yoruba nation.”

It further accused the Ilana Omo Oodua of getting “foreign funding from some ignorant Nigerians in the Diaspora to fund its plots to “destabilise the current government and the Nigerian nation and eventually truncate the country’s democracy.”

YAF also expressed its displeasure with Ilana Omo Oodua and its allies for constituting “themselves to unrepentant critics of the current government through their frequent acerbic and destructive outbursts and attacks against the government, coupled with the violence they unleash on innocent Nigerian citizens, which have become their pastime.

“It is very clear that the masterminds of this violence are bent on throwing Nigeria into total chaos to hasten the collapse of governments at both the state and federal levels to enable them to execute their evil plans for Nigeria, ahead of the 2023 general elections.

“They are planning to take advantage of the current security challenges in the country to wreak further havoc, starting with the South-West and expecting to instigate reprisals against Southerners in the North of Nigeria with the ultimate objective of destabilising the country, just as their partner-in-crime, IPOB is currently doing in the South-East and South-South regions of this country.”

YAF also challenged the international community “to assist Nigeria’s security agencies to unmask both the local and foreign sponsors of these agents of violence in our midst and punish them accordingly.”

The Forum further warned in the petition of its readiness to mobilise its members across the country to confront any group planning to destabilise Yorubaland under the guise of agitations for self-determination and a separate country for the Yoruba.