By Wole Adedeji, Ilorin

As the calls for restructuring of the Nigerian state and separatist agitations grow, the Yorubas known to be in 12 of the 16 local government areas in Kwara State, are asking that the issue be addressed with immediate effect.

At a conference convened in Ilorin under the aegis of Apapo Yoruba Kwara, AYK, they called on the Federal Government to commence the process of returning the country to true federalism as negotiated and agreed to by their leaders and fathers in the 2014 National Conference document.

The socio-cultural organization, which is made up of over 16 Yoruba socio-cultural groups, led by Chief Samuel Adewoye, in a speech read by High Chief Jayeola Omotoso, called for an immediate implementation of the recommendations in the said 2014 National Conference, saying that it was sacrosanct to do so.

According to them, “the 1999 Constitution (as amended) does not adequately guarantee and take care of the interest of all the ethnic nationalities in Nigeria.”

They addedd that “there is no doubt that Nigeria is on the brink; and in order to save it from total collapse, it is hereby strongly recommended that the Federal Government should urgently implement the recommendations of the 2014 National Conference, by returning Nigeria to true federalism as negotiated and agreed to by our founding fathers.”

At the conference, titled, ‘Kwara Yoruba and the Issues of Security, Restructuring and Self Determination for Yoruba Nation, the Yorubas in Kwara State also strongly demanded from the Federal Government a cohesive running of Nigeria’s affairs, insisting that government should return to the “1963 Constitution as may be modified.”

The Kwara Yorubas at the conference recommended among others that “a boundary adjustment, which will return Kwara State to the South-West geo-political zone be done and the establishment of state police to enhance security and fiscal federalism or resource control.”

They also in their position demanded that “in respect of the Kwara State government, we emphasize the imperative of restoring the dignity, honour and paraphernalia of Yoruba traditional institutions in the so-called Ilorin Emirate, that is, Asa, Moro, Ilorin West, Ilorin East and Ilorin South by grading and upgrading them like their counterparts in the other local government areas of the state.

“Implementing without further
delay, the two subsisting court judgements already won by the good people of Moro Local Government, which exclude them from Ilorin Emirate.

“Putting machinery in motion for the immediate creation of Local Council Development Areas, LCDAs, with particular reference to Ifelodun, Asa and Moro local government areas, which constitute some of the largest local councils in the federation, etc.”

The Yorubas in Kwara also lamented the plethora of challenges of insecurity in the country, via the activities of Boko Haram, bandits, terrorists, and killer herdsmen, stressing that “the situation had all combined to threaten the Federal Government out of its wits.”

They said, “The rapidity and frequency of these odious crimes have turned the country into an unsafe haven. The high sense of insecurity across the federation combined with the unwillingness of the power-that-be to restructure the country provide a fertile ground for the agitation for self-determination in the form of the Yoruba Nation, Biafra Republic, Middle Belt Republic, South-South Republic, etc.”

They concluded by saying that “failure to address these issues with sincererity of purpose, Kwara Yorubas are whole heartedly in support of Yoruba self determination, Yoruba Nation or Oodua Republic, come what may.”

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