AKURE/IBADAN – Agitators for the creation of the Yoruba nation have dismissed police decision to monitor and investigate their activities, especially in Lagos State.
Chief Deji Osinbogun, a leader of the Yoruba World Assembly (YWA), maintained that since all these years of heinous acts perpetuating by the Fulani herdsmen, Myetti Allah, the killing and maiming of innocent Nigerians by the so-called Myetti Allah cattle breeders, the police have not been able to issue such threats or investigate the whole issue and bring out the perpetrators.
They wonder why police should now be saying that they would be going after those clamouring for their legitimate rights.
He noted that it was disappointing that the police which had failed to protect citizens, should be talking of investigating self-actualisation agitators, arguing that the attempt might further deepen the disunity in the country.
In his reaction also, the Media and Communication Secretary of Ilana Omo Oodua, Adeleye Maxwell, said the decision of the police to investigate agitators was of no effect as long as the agitators carried out their advocacy for self-determination in a peaceful manner.
Mr. Maxwell, who spoke on behalf of the Ilana Omo Oodua, said: “It is our rights to protest for self-determination, we are protesting for self-determination in accordance with the law of the land, the UN and AU Constitutions, which Nigeria is even part of attested to this that self-actualisation is our legitimate right.
“The Nigeria Constitution also stipulated that self-determination protest and demand are our legitimate rights, the only limitation is that it must be done in a peaceful manner.
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“We have been very careful that our protests are peacefully conducted. Even the police are always on ground to ensure that the protest is not hijacked by hoodlums.
“They are always on ground to maintain law and order. We have staged the protests in Ibadan. It was peaceful; no life was reportedly lost.
“Journalists were there with well coverage and there were no reports of loss of lives, nor was any protester arrested for possession of unlawful arms.
“We held the protest in Abeokuta in Ogun State. It was also a peaceful one. Some of our people were initially arrested by the police, but they were freed when they found nothing implicating or contrary on them.
“They carry no arms, nor ammunitions. We are agitating for our legitimate rights as stipulated by laws of the country. So, I think the IGP is just saying something to impress his boss, as you know his new in that office.”
Similarly, the Yoruba Nation Global Directorate, the Yoruba shadow government, has expressed surprise at the decision of the police to place separatist groups in the country under watch, describing it as a ploy to hound the agitators.
Otunba Demola Edward, Information Coordinator of the group, told SUNDAY INDEPENDENT that the Police that failed to protect life and property of the citizenry was promising to chase shadows.
He declared that the group was unperturbed by the threat, vowing that nothing would stop them from pursuing their desire for independent Yoruba nation.
Otunba Edward said: “We found it interesting that the Police that failed woefully in its primary duties of maintaining law and order and securing the lives and properties of citizens under the disputable Federal Government is now threatening citizens of various nationalities within a mere geographical expression exercising their fundamental human rights of self- determination under international law and jurisprudence.
“While we view this as a ploy to criminally harass legitimate agitators for Yoruba Nation, we say unequivocally that no threats will discourage our determination to demand for actualisation of a sovereign Yoruba nation, which will save our people from the ongoing massacre and the impending genocide by the Fulani backed by government of Nigeria, who are hell bent on forcefully taking over our land.
“It is disheartening to note that the failed Nigeria state is evidently unsafe for Yoruba citizens, as economic woes, incessant kidnapping, raping, and murders by Fulani continue to heighten in our land.
“We reiterate that our quest to exit Nigeria under peaceful, civil and legal means was undermined by the failed Gen. Buhari-led government.
“It is noteworthy that propositions made to the Nigerian government by the Yoruba Nation in conjunction with other ethnic nationalities have so far been ignored by Buhari’s administration, a Fulani leader under whose watch the atrocities aforementioned are now a daily common occurrence.
“Suffice it to say that the Yoruba nation is not ignorant of the Fulani-led administration’s plans to execute a grand evil plan to conquer Yoruba land and subjugate Yoruba citizens on their original ancestral home land.
“We urge all agitators for Yoruba nation, Middle Beltans, and Biafra, home and diaspora, to continue their liberation activities without let or hindrance.
“The Directorate takes cognisance of the treaties of the Commonwealth, the African Union and United Nations. Our quest for self-determination is non-negotiable.”
Otuba Edward, however, urged the Yoruba to remain calm and go about their businesses pending the exit of the nationality from the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
However, leader of the Yoruba Youth Socio-Cultural Association (YYSA) Worldwide, Comrade Olalekan Hammed, said there was nothing extraordinary in the police monitoring or investigating the activities of agitators.
“As the worldwide youth leader of Yoruba ethnic group, I champion our cause to ensure that Nigeria is restructured because we believe that it is the solution to current problems and the only way through which peace and development could be ascertained.
“In other words, peaceful and orderly agitation is legit, but some of Oodua and Biafra agitators have become deviants.
“They are ready to kill and destroy their own region all in the name of agitation.
“At least, nineteen police officers have been killed in the last one month in South East by deadly agitators.
“Although, none of the Oodua agitators has become so devilish to that extent, but they all have to be checked, I mean, to restrain them from embarking on killing and destruction.
“There is nothing wrong in it if the police decided to investigate those perceived to be heteroclite among the so-called separatists because destruction will only be a setback to our region.
“Agitation for restructuring or secession is part of the citizens’ inalienable rights provided it is done lawfully without shedding of blood.
“We cannot say that investigating the agitators is a way to hound them, no.
“We could all see what is happening in the East, where many police stations were set ablaze and officers were murdered,” Hammed said.
Hakeem Odumosu, Lagos Commissioner of Police, said the State Police Command is investigating threats of attacks by the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and members of Oodua Republic.
Odumosu spoke at a stakeholders’ meeting on security, which was chaired by Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Lagos State governor, on Monday, May 10.
“The command has taken notice of agitators for Oodua Republic by some Yoruba separatist groups and the threats to disrupt law and order in the state,” Odumosu said.
“Twenty-four of these groups have been identified and being closely monitored.
“Similarly, the threat of IPOB to attack soft targets in Lagos is equally being put on the radar of the command intelligence gathering and other security services in the state.
“Strategies are being put in place to neutralise their activities.”