Pan Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, has denounced the comments credited to a former Governor of Kano State, Alhaji Musa Kwankwaso, during his recent visit to Ibadan, describing it as “uncouth, rude and insensitive.”
The ex-governor, now a Senator, had during the inauguration of some facilities in Ibadan reportedly asked some Yoruba elders to “shut up”.
According to Afenifere, Kwankwaso’s grouse with Yoruba leaders was their call for an end to the criminal activities of Fulani herdsmen in the South-West region at a recent summit in Ibadan.
It noted that the leaders at the summit said the Yoruba nation might reconsider its place in a union that could not protect them and would not allow them to protect themselves if they did not see any sign to restructure Nigeria into a proper federation.
But Afenifere in a statement on Monday by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Yinka Odunakin, said Kwankwaso did not condemn the abduction of a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Chief Olu Falae, by Fulani herdsmen.
The body said, “The declaration is not anywhere near the statement of Gen. Yakubu Gowon on August 3, 1966 that ‘there is no basis for Nigerian unity, which has been so badly rocked, not only once but several times’ or the theme of the North’s revenge coup of July 29,1967, titled ARABA, an Hausa word meaning ‘let us divide it’.
“In all his ramblings in Ibadan, Kwakwanso did not condemn the abduction of Chief Olu Falae; the killing of innocent farmers; raping of women and destruction of crops and farmlands in the course of the grazing activities of Fulani herdsmen. He only tacitly justified their activities by offering excuses for their criminal conducts.”
According to Afenifere, Kwankwaso’s utterance is a replay of the sordid episode of 2,000 when Arewa leaders “rudely stormed the office of then Oyo State Governor, Alhaji Lam Adesina, now late, on behalf of nomadic cattle rearers, by coming to the same city to ask ‘the age mates of his father to shut up’.”
It added, “It is another sad day for the clash of civilisations within the Lugard cage, when a man, who has occupied all the offices Kwakwanso has held, opens his mouth in a people’s domain and all he vomits make listeners to confuse him with a herdsman or Boko Haram chieftain.
“With the uncouth, rude and insensitive remarks of Kwankwaso and his ilk in the North, which are like pouring salt on injury, it is coming clear to us that there may be a grand agenda with the activities of the Fulani herdsmen, either as an advance party of Boko Haram into our territory or an expansionist project.
“The Yoruba leaders therefore stand by every word in the Ibadan declaration.”
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