Kemi Olaitan in Ibadan
Human rights activist and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. Femi Falana, yesterday prescribed the late Obafemi Awolowo’s template on animal rearing as a way out of the incessant kidnapping, attack by herdsmen and other related security issues in the country.
This is just as he called on Yoruba leaders to go back to the drawing board and discuss how to make the land great.
He said there was no security threat in Yorubaland by Fulani herdsmen during the era of Awolowo when the late sage created six ranches for cows across the South-west region, stating that no cow was brought from the Northern part of the country to the South, which reduced the influx of herdsmen.
Falana, while speaking yesterday in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, during a programme organised by the Assembly of all Yoruba Groups Worldwide with the theme, “The Paramount of Yoruba Unity in Tackling the Insecurity Menace in Yorubaland,” maintained that Yoruba needed to go back to Awolowo’s policy, so as to checkmate activities of Fulani herdsmen in Yorubaland
According to him, “Nobody brought cow from the North to the South-west during the era of Obafemi Awolowo, who created almost six ranches in Yorubaland located in Iseyin, Epe, Ondo and Ekiti. All the cow we ate in Yorubaland then were reared here in South-west; there is no tribe in Nigeria today that can override the Yoruba; let’s fight for our rights so that we can control our economy ourselves.”
The Convener of the event, Dr. Victor Taiwo, said it was time for all Yoruba people to bury their individual ego and come together in unionism for common purpose, adding that if Yoruba people were united, no forces in the world could come against them.
He pointed out that merely being united was not enough but to put on ground solidly built structures so as to sail through the challenges on ground, stating that all atrocities committed by the herdsmen must stopped.
He then suggested that a seven-man Central Coordinating Committee should be established which would consist of three most prominent royal fathers of Yoruba nation so as to have secretariat which would serve as Central Coordinating Centre and to be named Oduduwa Centre.
On his part, Prof. Banji Akintoye, reiterated that Yoruba’s self- determination should not be misconstrued for secession, adding that Yoruba self- determination was not negotiable.
He then called on Yoruba people to join hands together to form alliances, network and collaborate to fight for the same course, stating that there was the need to sensitise the people and moblilise them for the struggle ahead.
However, a communiqués issued at the end of the meeting proclaimed that June 12 should be a day of referendum for Yoruba’s self-determination, and that the insecurity situation in Ondo, Oke-Ogun, Yewa and others was unacceptable.
The communique also stated among others, that all Yoruba elites should be ready to make meaningful contributions towards self-determination; all Yoruba groups should mobilise relief materials for Yoruba people currently in refugee camps, and that the state assemblies should move motions that would assist the struggle for self-determination