Admission Of Yoruba Nation To Global Body, An Endorsement Of Agitation For Freedom–Akintoye
The recent acceptance of the Yoruba-speaking nation to the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization,UNPO will give global voice to the age-long agitation for a better deal for Yorubas in the affairs of Nigeria.
A foremost Yoruba nationalist,Professor Banji Akintoye stated this while fielding questions on AM120,a breakfast show on the television channel of the Broadcasting Corporation of Oyo State,BCOS.
Processor Akintoye said the body exists to give voice to the nations submerged in larger countries adding that,”being accepted into the UNPO is a recognition that you are a people that deserves a voice.
“It means our culture is under attack;that we can still take our culture to a place that it is being recognized.”
According to the Yoruba leader,”we now have an agency that can maximize our voice in the thing we desire.It is like a person holding a cutlass in the bush.How you are going to use it is your business.”
The renowned historian and former Senator while speaking on the present political structure said over- centralization of governance has suppressed over 56 million people in Yoruba speaking nation.
“We want to go back to that original plan in which each federating unit is free to manage its life without interference.In a country like Nigeria,unitary system is impossible.
“Nigeria is not a nation,but a country of many nations.That is the foundation of our problems.Each tribe,each nationality should be able yo determine their own fate.”
He said like every other emerging nations,Yoruba nation has an agenda put together by her history,culture and religion.
“For instance,it is part of Yoruba agenda to uphold their culture.We are very proud of our our culture.
“It is part of Yoruba agenda that people should select their kings from a pull of princes and the selection is done by high level chiefs.This is very unique.
“It is also being recognized that Yoruba’s have the strongest and very clear tradition of religious tolerance in the world”,he said
Professor Akintoye said that in agitating for freedom,Yoruba nation remains the only major nation that never demanded break up.For us,it is build build and not break,break.”
The Emeritus Professor of History described as laudable the security network set up by governors in the South West states,saying it will assist to defend Yoruba farmers in villages and rural communities as well as people residing in urban cities.
Professor Akintoye continued,”the danger of food shortage and starvation is staring us (Yoruba nation) in the face.Our nation is in danger.Our farmers can no longer go to the farms because of fear of rampaging Fulani intruders.”
The elder statesman said there is unity in the decision by the Yoruba nation to be free.
As he puts it,”we have to take that decision together.No individual Yoruba person has the authority to say we are pulling out.I’m a responsible person and I know how things are done in the world.”
The frontline Yoruba nationalist believed that a proper federation could be achieved through referendum by a set of people who desired to pull out of the present structure.