The National Coordinator of the Yoruba militia group, Oodua People’s Congress (OPC), Chief Gani Adams, who is also a representative of the South-West at the ongoing national conference, on Thursday, expressed disappointment over the threat by the Lamido of Adamawa, Alhaji Aliyu Barkindo Lamido, that he will lead his people to secede to Cameroon if the controversy surrounding the modality for voting at the conference is not resolved.
The delegates are yet to agree on the voting pattern as they are divided between adopting two-thirds or three-quarter majority votes. However, most delegates agree that the Federal Government’s proposal of 75 percent votes in arriving at decisions during the conference may be a herculean task.
The development came even as Mr. Adams appealed to the entire Yoruba race to put their representatives at the conference on the watch list, advising that any Yoruba representative, who betrays his race should be politically incapacitated.
Speaking on arrival from Abuja at the Murtala Mohammed Airport, Lagos, Gani Adams, who was reacting to the secession threat by the Lamido of Adamawa, cautioned that a royal father of his standing should not speak carelessly.
According to him, nobody has the right to threaten the unity of Nigeria since there are a lot of interests among the six geo-political zones in the country.
“I was highly disappointed by his statement; an eminent royal father like the Lamido of Adamawa ought not to make such a statement. He is one of the most respected emirs we have in Nigeria today. He should be the number five most recognised emir in the country. I seize this opportunity to appeal to the royal fathers, including the emir to watch their statements. Nobody should threaten the unity of Nigeria. We want Nigeria, but we should not be threatened. We, the Yoruba people want to remain in Nigeria, but we shouldn’t be threatened.
“We didn’t have oil in 1954 to 1959, but we all know what Chief Obafemi Awolowo did for this nation through the western region government. And when you study the Yoruba very carefully, 80 per cent of our development came from individuals and not government. We don’t rely on any development from government. It is the North that depends on the government. But they don’t need Nigeria more than us, we all need Nigeria because we have inter-married, done businesses together and Abuja solidifies us. There are a lot of interests among the six geo-political zones and Abuja and Lagos. It will be better for us to have one Nigeria so that our population can speak for us wherever we are.
“It is unfortunate that such a statement is coming from the emir and he is not the only one with such mindset”.
Shedding more light on the Yoruba agenda at the conference, the OPC Chieftain, who said he was ready to die for his race, alleged that there were some people from the South-West zone, who are at the conference to sabotage the Yoruba race, comparing them to a river that forgets its source.
“I’m ready to die than to betray the Yoruba cause. Some people, I believe, were brought there to sabotage the interest of the Yoruba. It is someone who is not a deep thinker that forgets his roots. For me to be a Nigerian, I must be a very good Yoruba person”, he said.