The Agbekoya Warriors, a Yoruba frontline group of fighters on Tuesday lambasted a former governor of Osun state and Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola for describing Yoruba nation agitators as fools.
Agbekoya described the statement as an insult, saying it undermines the intelligence of Yoruba people.
Aregbesola had described the agitators of Yoruba nation as foolish while speaking at the 64th birthday/ anniversary lecture organised for the Minister by Awolowo Centre for Philosophy and Ideology, held in Osun State.
The Agbekoya Warriors in a statement by their National Coordinator and Jagunmolu Agbekoya of Yorubaland, Prince Kunle Adelakun, said, “Mr. Aregbesola’s assertion calls for an urgent review of criteria for leadership and elective representation, in Yorubaland.”
The statement reads; “With great dismay and disappointment. It is disheartening and very hard to believe what came out of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, when he said the agitators of Oduduwa Nation are ‘foolish’. An insult of a great magnitude.
“Though, we are aware of the fact that Aregbesola is serving his master, the federal government but he must also know that Yoruba people really know exactly what they want and they will never compromise their stance.
“If Ogbeni Aregbesola has compromised his people to protect his political interest and plum job, while his people are going through hardship, kidnapping, killings of our farmers and villagers by the Fulanis and the insecurity throughout the land and uncertain future (sic).
“It is completely rude and absurd to call or address people of high integrity who have been championing our liberation from the shackles of oppression, injustice and marginalisation.
“Such people like Prof. Banji Akintoye, our royal fathers and other eminent personalities in Yorubaland; including Chief Sunday Adeyemo (aka: Sunday Igboho) must never be regarded as being foolish. They are certainly our today’s heroes. Mr. Aregbesola must examine himself.
“We believe that Mr. Rauf Aregbesola must have been on ‘anesthesia dose’. If not he wouldn’t have uttered a derogatory statement to his own people,(especially the true and genuine sons and daughters of Oduduwa) fully known that ‘those who forget their source or root are nothing but fools’.
“Therefore, we are quick to understand where exactly Mr. Rauf Aregbesola is coming from. He should not tell us what we have already known.
“Thinking that Nigeria would liberate Africa. We urge him to wake up from slumber and ‘anesthesia dose’. Nigeria has not even liberated herself from injustice, self-inflicted colonialism, oppression, nepotism and corruption on a large scale let alone liberate the whole of Africa.
“The Yoruba nation doesn’t belong to this fairy tale. Fairy tales are for children or those who refuse to grow.”
Reacting to the killing of some residents of Igangan and burning of the palace of Asigangan, the Agbekoya said it won’t hesitate to declare Oduduwa Republic if the Federal government fails to act as a government for all.
“We, Agbekoya Warriors under the leadership of High Chief Olalere Ayalu, are well prepared to defend Yoruba Nation with or without the support of our politicians. We had done it in the past and certainly we would do it again, without a gunshot.
“Furthermore, the Agbekoya Warriors condemned wholeheartedly the killing of forty-five (45) people and destruction of properties in Igangan area, in Ibarapa axis of Oyo state and the slaughtering of three (3) hunters in Imeko local government area of Ogun State.
“We can no longer fold our hands as we see our people being killed by the Fulanis. Enough is Enough! Enough of bloodshed and enough of killings. This is not the time to appeal to the Federal government to do the needful but rather to say point blank that we, as Yoruba people in the Southwest of Nigeria are tired and sick with this inhumane act of the Fulanis. The Agbekoya, the Kabiyesis and the Southwest Governors are on the same page.
“At this juncture, we are giving the Federal government of Nigeria twenty- one (21) days to correct the wrongs and do what is appropriate to tackle the insecurity in South-Western Nigeria. We really know what to do. We shall not hesitate to declare Oduduwa Republic if the Federal government fails to act as a government for all.
“This is the resolution of the Agbekoya Warriors, the Iyalodes, the Oluawos, the Agbekoya Elders Forum and the Orunmilas. We the Yorubas were never cowards but we are brave warriors and intellectually sound. We, Yoruba are the ones that hold Nigeria as one but at the same time we could scatter it if we are being pushed to the wall. A word is enough for the wise!
“On behalf of the Agbekoya-In-Council and our President–General, High Chief Olalere Ayalu, the Iyalode Agbekoya Chief (Madam) Bogunmbe and the general members of Agbekoya throughout the Yorubaland, we rest our submission for now.”