- Warns Fulanis against hegemonic approach
Kemi Olaitan in Ibadan
A Yoruba Leader, Prof. Banji Akintoye Saturday warned that Nigeria could break up unless there was deep sense of equity, justice and fair play among all ethnic nationalities in the country.
Akintoye, a Senator in the Second Republic, gave conditions to forestall the breakup of the country, even as he called on the Fulani hegemonists “to give up the attitude that they own Nigeria and must continue to rule it.”
He gave the advice during an interview on Fresh FM 105.9 FM, an Ibadan-based radio station.
He likened Nigeria “to a country under the reign of an empire, which must crumble and break up.”
During the session, Akintoye noted that like other artificially created empires across the globe that had become history, Nigeria “is a time bomb, which may soon explode unless equity, justice and fair play reign in the land.”
He explained that some foreign powers came and created an empire and gathered a number of nationalities together and gave them a single government.
He described Nigeria as an empire comprising many nationalities.
“In the history of the world, every empire breaks up and the nationalities remain. Historians think that the reason for this is that swallowing nationalities together in the belly of one empire is too much. The empire will suffer indigestion and finally break up. That is a fundamental thing.
“It is not about Nigeria alone. It is a fundamental universal world experience that empires combine many nationalities and rule over them and then the empire breaks up. So, it is to be expected that a country like Nigeria will some day break up.”
From modern perspective of governance and interrelationships, he observed that all leaders across all ethnic nationalities “can do things that can make Nigeria survive for a long time. We must get the people who believe that they have the right to conquer and subdue the rest of Nigeria.
“We must ask them to give up, repudiate and stop all of that disaster. They must return to civil relationship among other people of Nigeria. If they continue to act like they own the country. They will only speed up the breaking up of the country.
“They say Nigeria is theirs that Allah has given it to them. There is no way Nigeria can continue as long as this type of agenda and ambition exists among us. The first thing is to demand of our Fulani brethren that they must repudiate the agenda.”
He described the Yoruba as a “powerful ethnic group” not just in Nigeria, but also in the world, disclosing that the Yoruba have the reputation of being the most educated immigrants in the United States.
“A few days ago, I was in Benin Republic and the leaders of the Yoruba there are creating their own chapter of the Yoruba World Congress. As I speak, there is at least one delegate who is travelling in the US to ginger people there to create their own chapter.
“We will be able to hold a world congress of the Yoruba people and the whole world will see that this is different. Some intellectuals are even now telling us that the Yoruba nation and its descendants in the world are in almost every country in the world. Yoruba are usually among the most educated anywhere you find them outside the country.”