A coalition of determination groups across south west states, under the umbrella of Yoruba Liberation Command, YOLICOM, has said that there was nothing to celebrate at Nigeria’s independence as there was no inspiration and hope for the despairing population with people nursing their festering wounds and living in fear and anxiety.
Addressing the media in Lagos on the state of the nation, George Akinola, YOLICOM Secretary for Information, noted that as Nigeria marked her 58th year of independence, all indices point to a shipwreck with strong indications that the country is moving backwards, as the fundamental issues why Nigeria has failed are glaring.
Akinola said that the democratic process is flawed, while elections can no longer guarantee either the freewill of the people or good governance.
“As indicated in the events in Osun and Ekiti States, elections have become a savage stock exchange where the state and politicians institutionalize crime, bribe the electorate with illicit money and ensure the victor emerges through a totally corrupt and inept system. What we are seeing is cultural genocide. Our values are being eroded. The Nigerian state is criminalizing the people.
With cash for votes in the most open and bizzare manner, social vices will triple; there will be greater exclusion, rogues will assume leadership, criminals will take over state institutions and armed gangs will be in charge of our laws. This is the worst phase in the history of the modern Yoruba nation. The criminalization of Yoruba people has become more pronounced because of the Nigerian hegemony that seeks monoculture and the destruction of indigenous ethics”, he said.
The groups also said that party politics has become a weapon for mass impoverishment of the Yoruba nation, and that it has become an avenue for blind robbery, stealing of public funds and outright theft of the sovereignty of the people.
Akinola further asserted, “The situation is getting worse. Yoruba people are disillusioned. Yoruba people are frustrated, dejected, abandoned and rubbished by a system that will never meet their needs and aspirations.
The signs on the streets show that there is burning anger, there is fury, there is hatred and deep resentment against a suffocating system that consistently impoverishes and undermines the means of livelihood of the people”.
He regretted that Nigeria since 2010 has become a theatre of war coordinated by the Islamic militant group Boko Haram, and in 2013, there was the insurgence of Fulani herdsmen and since 2010 till date, no fewer than 30,000 lives have been lost, including several Yoruba people that have been killed either in the North or in the South West, right in their homes.
“For instance, in June 2012, 50 people were killed in Barkin Ladi in Plateau State. On the day they were to be buried, the herdsmen struck again killing a serving Senator Gyang Datung and another Hon Gyang Filani the majority leader of the Plateau State House of Assembly.
This year, 105 souls were lost in the same Barkin Ladi. Three days ago, 15 people were killed by Fulani herdsmen in Plateau State.
In Benue state, several communities have been subjected to perpetual attacks by the Fulani herdsmen. In Oke-Ako and Ipao Ekiti, Fulani herdsmen have killed no fewer than 5 people within one year. The gory images of bloodletting have continued unabated. The Nigerian soldiers under the full control of the Fulani are carrying out the bidding of their masters.
Yoruba territories have been invaded by armed Fulani herdsmen. On weekly basis in Yelwa and Oke-Ogun areas of Ogun and Oyo States, Fulani herdsmen kidnap and rape Yoruba people at will.
The Lagos-Ibadan highway has been invaded, along many sections, by armed Fulani men, continuously creating a state of siege and trauma”, he lamented.
Akinola therefore stated that the task ahead of all young people in Yorubaland is to work for the self determination of Yoruba people as a sovereign nation.
He said the demand for self determination is in line with the United Nations charter and the Africa Charter on Peoples and Human Right.