Oyo State House of Assembly invasion, baseless, misguided, says Afenifere

By Innocent Raphael

Afenifere, a socio-cultural and socio-political Yoruba group has expressed disappointment over the invasion of the Oyo State House of Assembly in Ibadan, labelling the act as misguided and against the interests of the Yoruba people.

In a statement made public by the National Publicity Secretary of the group, Comrade Jare Ajayi, Afenifere stated that such actions were baseless as there was no provision in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria for a separate republic within the country.

The invasion, which occurred on Saturday, saw individuals purporting to be Yoruba nation agitators storming the premises of the Oyo State House of Assembly, Agodi Secretariat, Ibadan; regarded as ‘the political capital of Yorubaland’, claiming the establishment of a ‘Democratic Republic of the Yoruba.’

While acknowledging the existing dysfunctions within the Nigerian system, Afenifere emphasized that violent divisions were not the solution. Instead, they advocated for restructuring as a means to address the country’s challenges.

“But solutions to the shortcomings do not lie in violent divisions. Rather, what we should strive for is how the perceived wrongs in the country can be righted.

“Afenifere is of the strong view that President Bola Tinubu administration is taking steps to rejig Nigeria in a manner that would make the country become one that every citizen would be proud of soonest. Restructuring the country is a sure way of accelerating this,” the statement read in part.

The group also highlighted the need for constituent entities to have control over their affairs, asserting that restructuring will lead to a more beneficial Nigeria for all citizens.

Berating the invaders’ actions, and criticizing their lack of foresight and reliance on violence. The statement emphasized the Yoruba tradition of thoughtful consideration and urged for a thorough investigation to hold perpetrators accountable.

The group also questioned how anyone could equate storming a State House of Assembly with establishing a Federal Republic, emphasizing that true Yorubas deliberate carefully before taking such monumental steps.

“Yorubas don’t act that way. Rather, they apply wisdom and intellectualism in major steps they want to take. They apply tact. They demonstrate finesse and shun violence as much as possible. Examples of this attitude abound – going by their reactions to some major issues that occurred in the country in recent times,” it read.

Afenifere further urged a thorough investigation into the incident to ensure that both perpetrators and masterminds face severe legal consequences, aiming to deter similar actions in the future.

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