Group accused Police of killing two Yoruba Republic Agitators in Lagos
By Oluyomi Adio
The Yoruba Self Determination Movement (YSDM) has said that two peaceful agitators for Oodua Republic have been killed in Ojota on Monday, during a peaceful protest.
In a statement made available to Irohinoodua,
Vice- Chairman, YSDM Banji Ayiloge said his group has
resolved to call on Yoruba to rally in Lagos and other Yoruba state capitals to defend the rights of the people to self determination.
He said the Yoruba peoples’ advocacy to leave Nigeria’s suffocating enslavement is real.
The full statement is listed below:
Let me express that our demand for self-determination is rooted in law of Nigeria and that of international conventions. We are therefore, embarking on peaceful demonstrations and rallies in Lagos and other Yoruba as part of our advocacy projects. It is also our hope that the Nigerian government will not act true to type, by molesting and harassing our people during the peaceful demonstration.
All our activists have been counseled to be peaceful and law abiding and urge the government to allow demonstrators to exercise their right to peaceful assembly without undue interference. The Yoruba Nation movement’s desire is for the voices of its members to be hard; and it is in the duty of the government to ensure the safety of all citizens.
We note with keen interest that political parties have been allowed to stage rallies and canvas for their positions. Thus, there is no reason why the government will prevent or stop a popular peaceful rally from taking place. Without a doubt, politicians’ desire is to convince the people to vote for them during the forthcoming presidential election; while the YSDM has every right to urge Yoruba people not to participate in the election.
According to our movement, the result of the presidential election will not change the precarious situation Yoruba people have been experiencing since the 1966 coup d’état that stymied Yoruba peoples’ progress in Nigeria.
Let me remind you all that Chief Obafemi Awolowo put the Yoruba on the path of economic progress and rapid development and set the pace for other regions in Nigeria to emulate, when he became the Leader of government business in Western Nigeria. The 1966 coup leaders set the Yoruba on the downward hill through the abolition of regional autonomy and, in its place, the imposition of a unitary system of government. This system resulted in the central government total take-over of Western Region assets and robbed the region of its autonomy. Since then, the region had continued to hover in the doldrums, because of the overbearing central government not allowing the region to chart its own course.
Let me on behalf of YSDM note that the determination of Northern Nigerian elites to usurp all powers of the central government, almost to the exclusion of other regions of the country, made it difficult for the country to forge ahead economically and make true unity impossible. Thus, when a politician from the south became President, he was always at the mercy of these elites and he was rendered impotent. As a result, he spent his time in office trying to placate Northerners in order to avoid being booted out of office either through a coup d’état or impeachment.
It is our view that Northerners have made things easy for themselves to dominate through the rogue 1999 constitution which gave undue advantage to the North by creating more undeserved local governments in the North to the disadvantage of people of Southern Nigeria. This rouge constitution, under which the 2023 general election is being organized, is patently illegal and fraught with all kinds of mischief and Yoruba people reject it in its entirety.
We strongly believe that the constitution was written by Northerners for the benefits of Northerners to the extent that it represents the views and interests of General Abacha, who single-handedly empaneled the writers and then imposed it on the people of Nigeria through Decree number 24. That should be unacceptable to any right-thinking individual in a well-ordered and just society.
The YSDM is of the opinion that our people can never reach their potential being part of Nigeria because of lack of equal opportunity and the fact of the usual claim of Northerners that they own Nigeria because Uthman Dan Fodio bequeathed it to them, during his jihad war of conquest of Northern Nigeria. We state without any reservation, that attempt to bring that war to Yorubaland died in Osogbo, an important Yoruba town, when our valiant Yoruba fighters prevented the Jihadists from overrunning our sacred land. It is this moribund mindset that has resulted in the establishment of all instruments of coercion exclusively in the North, especially, the trainings of all units of Nigerian armed forces. It is no secret that Nigeria’s $20B nuclear facilities are all in the North.