House South-west Caucus Condemns Unrest Caused by Yoruba Nation Agitators in Oyo

•We didn’t regret our invasion 

•Makinde lauds army, others for peace in state

Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja and Kemi Olaitan in Ibadan

The South West Caucus of the House of Representative has condemned the recent unrest caused by acclaimed Yoruba Nation agitators.

But some of the suspected agitators arrested on Saturday, by the Oyo State Police Command, following the invasion of the state secretariat and House of Assembly, yesterday, maintained that they had no regrets over their actions.

At the same time, Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, has commended the Nigerian Army and other security agencies for keeping peace in state.

The House caucus, in a statement jointly signed by its Chairman, James Faleke; Deputy Chief Whip,  Hon. Adewunmi Onanuga and Secretary General, Hon. Taofeek Ajilesoro, said the activities of the group posed a threat to the peace and stability of the region

“The South West Caucus of the House of Representatives strongly condemns the recent activities carried out by acclaimed Yoruba Nation Agitators, which have caused unrest and pose a threat to the peace and stability of our region.

“As representatives of the people, we stand firmly against any form of unlawful behaviour and violence that undermines the rule of law and the unity of our country, Nigeria,” the group stated.

The caucus said it was essential that all grievances and demands be addressed through peaceful and lawful means, respecting the rights and well-being of all citizens.

It added: “We urge all parties involved to engage in constructive dialogue, prioritise the welfare of our people, and work towards finding peaceful and lasting solutions to any grievances.

“Violence and lawlessness have no place in our society, and we call on all individuals to uphold the principles of peace, unity, and respect for the rule of law.”

The caucus said it remained committed to upholding the values of democracy, justice, and unity in the region and the country at large.

But the suspected agitators said what they did could not be said to be a treasonable felony, stating that their actions followed all due processes, legal activities and procedure.

This was as the state Police Commissioner, Adebola Hamzat, while parading the suspects described the act as criminal, unpatriotic and a clear case of treasonable felony and terrorism which would be meted with adequate sanctions.

Some masked men in army camouflage with rifles suspected to be Yoruba Nation agitators, Saturday, stormed the Oyo State Government Secretariat.

One of the agitators, Alabi Ogundeji, a 55-year-old lecturer at the Federal College of Education (Special), (SPED), Oyo, while speaking with journalists at the Police Command headquarters, Eleyele, Ibadan, said he felt comfortable because he was on his right, maintaining that what he did was lawful under the Nigerian and international laws.

“I’m part of the agitators and I cannot deny it. Yoruba as an indigenous nation is a nation on its own, we have so many nations in Nigeria which Yoruba is one of them.

“O’odua Nation leaders have taken every steps and actions that need to be taken, we have embarked on referendum which was the 500 petition signed by all Yorubas and this served as referendum.

“Our leadership went to all Yoruba speaking states to serve officials letters written by our leaders and we were given our own copy, after that was proclamation, after that, declaration, occupation, and notification to the world that Yoruba is an indigenous nation.

“We were at the Secretariat to celebrate and rejoice because of the new Nation that was born, it is not a new thing that Yoruba is a nation and we want to stand on our own, we have been together with Nigeria for over 100 years ago,” he said.

Also, a 29-year-old phone repairer, Ademola Adeniyi, who was part of those arrested, said he did not regret his actions.

He said, “We all know that nothing is working in Nigeria and things are hard for everyone except those in government. We were at the Secretariat waiting for our leaders to come and address us.

“We believe our leaders know much about the law, so we are not afraid to join when we were called upon. Our leaders told us that all challenges Yorubas are facing shall be addressed if we achieved our aim.”

However, while parading the suspects, the commissioner said the continued existence of Nigeria as a sovereign indivisible entity is a task that must be accomplished, stating that “the labour of our heroes past shall never be in vain.”

He added that the state Police Command would be unrelenting in ensuring continued united corporate existence of Nigeria as a country.

“As a parent, I enjoin other parents, guardians and leaders in every sphere of political, religious and socio-economic influence to prevail on their children, ward, protégés and followers against being used by unpatriotic individuals to promote anarchy in the state and by extension the nation.

“I would like to use this medium to remind the criminally minded that Oyo State is home to many responsible, hospitable and extremely intelligent individuals who pride themselves with creativity, hard-work and resourcefulness.

“Under my watch, it would not be reduced to a playground for the criminally minded and obviously misguided individuals or group who intend making their livelihood from distorting the relative tranquility enjoyed by the good people of the state,” Hamzat said.

On his part, Makinde gave the commendation when he received the 46th General Officer Commanding of the 2 Mechanised Division, Odogbo Barracks, Ibadan, Major-General Obinna Onubogu, at the Governor’s Office, Ibadan.

The governor seized the opportunity of the visit to throw light on the invasion of the Government Secretariat by suspected Yoruba Nation agitators, last Saturday.

Makinde explained how the effective security system in the state was able to bring the aggressors to their knees in no time.

He commended security agencies in the state for the roles they played in stopping the invaders and apprehending them, saying the emergency security response system was activated and that it worked perfectly to arrest the situation on time.

He thanked the Nigerian Army and other security agencies for their swift response in arresting the agitators, noting that, though there were security gaps, what the miscreants met was beyond their imagination.

Speaking earlier, Major-General Onubogu, said the warm reception accorded him showed the cordial relationship that had always existed between the Oyo State government and the Nigerian Army.

Onubogu appreciated Governor Makinde for his tremendous support to the Division over the years. He assured the government and residents of the state that the Army would continue to collaborate with sister security agencies to secure Oyo State and its people.

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