We’ll protect our people, land, from invasion — OPC, Agbekoya, others vow
Some Yoruba self-determination groups have assured monarchs in the Southwest that they are at their beck and call should any foreigner invades their territories.
The groups which comprise the Odua Peoples Congress, Agbekoya, Hunters Group, Isokan Ile Yoruba, Vigilante Group of Nigeria, Ibarapa Group and the Community Society Awareness Initiative, pledged to defend the region against invasion or threat in any guise.
Their decision is coming on the heels of the worsening insecurity in the region which many have ascribed to the presence of killer herdsmen.
Many residents of the invaded communities have alleged herdsmen of killing, abduction and even brazenly raping their women
The groups also threw their weight behind the Western Nigerian Security Network, Amotekun.
The groups, which held a security meeting yesterday in Lagos, stated this in a communiqué issued after their deliberations.
The meeting, held under the aegis of the South-West Security Stakeholders. It was initiated and chaired by the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams.
Among other things, the communiqué released by the Special Assistant on Media to the Aare Ona Kakanfo, Kehinde Aderemi, urged, “Obas and traditional leaders of Yorubaland not to hesitate to invite any of the groups listed above in the event of any threat to the security of every Yorubaman by invading groups anywhere in our land.’’
According to the communiqué signed by the Aare Ona Kakanfo and leaders of the participating organisations, the meeting reviewed recent security concerns in Yorubaland and the country in general.
It stated, “The meeting shared the concern of the people in general and prominent Nigerians especially about the security situation in the land. The meeting noted the exasperation inherent in the statement of the Chief of Defence Staff calling on Nigerians to defend themselves. This is clearly an official endorsement of self-defence.
“The meeting feared that the situation, if not addressed, signals a grievous national crisis. The meeting therefore called on the government to quickly arrest the apparent descent into anarchy.’’
The groups also said they aligned with the call on the President Buhari to prove his innocence in the carnage being perpetrated by herders by not only “unambiguously condemning the nefarious acts but also take clear steps to exterminate them.’’
The meeting noted that a multinational state like Nigeria must be built on respect for different human components making up the sovereign nation.
The communiqué added, “The meeting re-emphasised the call for return to true federalism which was the political arrangement leaders of the nation endorsed at independence. This will allow various nations in the country to take proper control of their affairs, including security.’’
The meeting was also attended by individuals such as Yinka Odumakin, Gboyega Adejumo, Akin Osuntokun, Sola Lawal and Olumuyiwa Okunowo.