The National Director of Event, Oodua Peoples Congress, Alhaji Chief Oyinlola Awe, has described those opposing the agitation for self determination as political opportunists.
Awe said the present situation in the country has called for such move, while explaining that the call for the Oodua Republic by the Yoruba was never a crime.
He noted also that the call for self autonomy was long overdue considering the population of the Yoruba people in the country.
Speaking shortly after a meeting of the National Coordinating Council in Lagos, the OPC chieftain said the situation in the country has shown that Nigeria is gradually drifting.
He flayed those working against the interest of the Yoruba race, saying many of the politicians in the region are only interested in their political ambitions in 2023.
He expressed confidence in the ability of the Yoruba race to achieve greatness, applauding the courage determination, and seriousness of those behind the struggle.
Awe said: “OPC played a major role in the struggle for this democracy.
“Many of our prominent members laid down their lives as sacrifice for democracy to be entrenched in this country.
“But, unfortunately, those that have been leading in the last two decades have lost touch with the people and they have also betrayed the trust.
“That is why the campaign for self determination has remained so consistent more than ever.
“I have had my own fair share of experiences during my 14 months in detention with my leader, Iba Gani Abiodun Ige Adams.
“Those trying moments became strong templates for our struggle for justice and the wellbeing of our race.
“So, we need to support the cause for liberty and growth of the Yoruba nation.”
Chief Awe, while explaining the reasons for the agitation, said: “Those agitating for self autonomy are not stupid.
“They are men and women of great knowledge, calibre, integrity and experience.
“They are both within and outside this country.
“They have identified the failures of the government in all sectors and as such we all know that Nigerians have had a lot of problems as a result of bad leadership.
“And they are tired.”
Awe admitted also that the call for self determination was born out of the desire to seek liberty for the Yoruba race, saying there are fears in the country at the moment that the Buhari Government might be the last.
He said: “Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, said it last Sunday that Nigeria has cracks that were capable of causing the breaking up of this country.
“We can see the writing on the wall because at the moment Nigeria’s economy is in comatose.
“The spate of insecurity is alarming.
“Borno State Governor have been attacked on four occasions and with the presence of ISIS and Al-Queda groups in the country, it is a clear indication that nobody is safe in the country.”
Chief Oyinlola, however, confirmed the story of terrorist attacks in Kishi, Oyo State, lamenting that the South West has now become a haven for bandits and terrorists.
He said: “Terrorists had, two weeks ago, invaded Kisi, a town in Oke Ogun area Those opposing Yoruba agitation for self determination are political opportunists — OPCof Oyo State.
“It took the timely intervention of the Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, that raised the alarm and also instructed the Oyo State OPC to flush out the terrorists in the forest before sanity was restored to the community.
“The situation in the country is as bad as that.”
The OPC Director of Event also urged President Buhari to use the special occasion of the 60th anniversary of Nigeria to listen to the cries of the people, even as he urged those championing the cause to continue the struggle, which, according to him, would never be vain.