By Kayode Ogundamisi
Interesting parapo meeting today Saturday 13th February 2020. (The Shasha area of Ibadan Oyo State had been on fire, killings and counter violence).
In the meeting an unrestrained demonstration of anger, lots of ‘THEY’ vs ‘US’. The zoom meeting was well attended. People threatening fire, thunder, tagging those of us calling for calm “traitors”. Then I asked, how many of your children were involved in the Ibadan killings today? SILENCE!
Then one of my comrades, particularly the one whose main vocation is for himself and his wife to galivant from @channelstv to @ARISEtv. The same “Principled” one who had pledged loyalty to Bola Tinubu, then changed to Candidate General Buhari, then migrated to incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan, then to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar. He was the most bruised. I told him to calm down, so we could have a constructive conversation. I asked him, aside your television rounds, have you ever handled an AK47? Simple question, he called me a bastard. I asked, will your Ibadan radio station host 100 Esos (Eso in Yoruba are foot soldiers, mainly populated by children of the poor but highly committed to the defence of our homeland). Silence! His weapon are microphone and Television Cameras. These guys have never handled a weapon in defence of the Yoruba people.
Another one was an Afenifere lackey during the Yoruba/Ijaw Ajegunle crisis–the same one who embezzled funds meant for Yoruba youth defending their streets, resulting in needless deaths of over 300 young Yoruba, many members of the Oodua People’s Congress. I asked when last he visited Eso zones across Yoruba land. SILENCE! He kept ranting about the Fulani.
I asked another one a practical question: do we have a list of vulnerable settlements? Has there been any attempt to activate our fighting organisations and self-determination groups (Note that many of this brave Men and Women are wallowing in the worst form of poverty in Yoruba land whilst those who urge them on have held power in Yoruba land without looking back)? I cautioned you need to activate and empower those demography, ideological training, discipline so that all manner of people won’t go about attacking innocent non-Yoruba. SILENCE! One pretended he had poor network. No answer!
One said I had ‘changed’. I told him, you can’t witness a wicked Yoruba ruling elite, hype up sons and daughters of the poor, I have personally attended the burial of many of those unsung heroes, unlike the new self-acclaimed champions of the Yoruba race, I know their names, I know some of the resting places, I still speak to family members, I still speak to comrades some who lost their eyes and limbs, if you are going to reignite that again I am not afraid to call for extreme caution and the need to truly be prepared.
Then the other clown, the one that shuttles between Kaduna, Jigawa and Bauchi government agencies. He hates the Fulani. Not the Nasir El Rufai or Atiku Abubakar or any other rich Fulani; he hates the poor Fulani in Yoruba settlements. These poor Fulani/Hausa are easy targets, they are the ones made to pay for the sins of criminal elements of Fulani/Hausa extraction.
When I raised the issue of holding ALL Yoruba political office holders to account, they screamed that it was Buhari’s fault. I told them I was disappointed in Buhari as they were but they must stop sidestepping Yoruba elected officials, be it APC or PDP SILENCE! We never like holding our own to account, the easy way is to blame everything that is wrong with us on people who do not look like us, do not speak our language or share our cultural heritage. The bogymen philosophy. Ruling elites love it.
Then one accused me of being ‘abroad’. Ah! This person’s wife and children are in America. During the struggle against the military, he ran away and only came back after power was handed over to civilians, he’s now one of the most visible self-styled “Yoruba warriors”. I told him to bring his immediate family back to Nigeria and I will join them. All through military rule, I stayed in Nigeria. I and my colleagues fought the military with every breath in us. I left after civilian rule. Who is the Coward here?
I might be a lone voice, but for the sake of Gari Ifo (OPC Gani Adams) whose corpse we never recovered; the sake of Alhaji Toyin (OPC Dr Frederick Isiotan Fasehun) whose head was chopped off and placed in a calabash; for the sake of hundreds of Yoruba youth, many in our fighting organisations, including the OPC, sent to their early grave, I will always call for a better way than war.
If Buhari isn’t doing well, mobilise for a legitimate removal. *Impeachment *Cabinet invoking an act for removal or *PMB persuaded to resign, or wait for another election to booth his party out. That is democracy, it is long, painful, a marathon, but it is enduring. I will oppose any means outside those legitimate options.
We know each other, I know a lot of you, your dossiers are available to us even if not available to the gullible, we know your plan B. We know how you will end up in the Diaspora when Nigeria descends into Somalia. You will jump from CNN to BBC as ‘experts’ whilst the poor attack the poor and your NGO rakes in foreign donations.
You are making Yorubaland the Ground Zero of the Nigerian conflict. We know that those who control the Nigerian Civil Society Space have a kitchen cabinet who cook flawed narratives in their not-so-secret WhatsApp groups to the local and International media. Can you not see this? Can you not see that they prefer that the next Nigerian crisis should have its ground zero in Yoruba land?.
If it was really about headsmen, our strategy will be to focus on the forests, playing offence not defence. Yorubaland of 2021 is diverse; we have Igbo Yoruba. Hausa Yoruba. Igala Yoruba and others. It is home to everyone and we must find a way to make those groups our allies in defending our poor.
If self-aggrandizement and making noise with little preparation is the way forward, like masturbation, you will ejaculate, but it cannot replace the real thing. It is not too late to look back at the mistakes of the past to correct the wrongs of today. The choice is for us all.
For the record, I am not opposed to Oduduwa Republic or the right of any other group to seek self-determination. My views about getting to that destination have evolved. If it cannot be achieved without bloodshed, call me a coward. I’d rather work to make what we have now better.
To those young people going about attacking those who do not speak your lang, when the refugee rescue ship arrives Nigeria, President Buhari will make room first for the family of his opponents before he remembers either his supporters or supporters of his opponents.
To the North: the fear of farmers being attacked are real. Women are being raped; communities are being hounded from their ancestral lands. You have to mount pressure on your political leaders to seek sincere, genuine and fair solutions with their southern counterparts.
The anger a lot of people feel against Boko Haram and it is time for you to be in Solidarity with your Southern Compatriots, same anger and condemnation should be channelled to those terrorising the South. The criminals are not all Fulani but are mainly of Fulani extraction, but that does not mean they commit crime in the name of the Fulani. We are all in this together
To President Buhari and Vice President Osinbajo, you sure have no idea what is brewing in the South West of Nigeria. It is not just what is brewing, it is the reaction that will come from the North, if it remains unresolved. WAKE UP! I’d rather be an alarmist than keep quiet.
President Buhari I started supporting you when no one dared touch you in the South West. Since ANPP days. I never received personal favours from your administrative, despite the rumours in the public domain. As a matter of fact, I have been begging lobbying your Minister Babatunde Fashola to fix Ikare road in Akoko Ondo State. Those are the only personal favours I have asked of your government since becoming President and No answer.
Mr President, if you ever see this, take the current Herders/Farmers conflict as your own Boko Haram incubation when President Yar’adua and Vice President Jonathan mismanaged Mohammed Yusuf. If this is the only reward, I get from supporting you, please do this. Declare a war on all armed criminal elements with AK47.
The clown in the meeting that was screaming Sunday Igboho. I won’t be the one to bust the myth. I recognise that the emergence of Sunday speaks volume of our collective failure. Credit to him for his efforts. All I can say is if it gets too hot. Sunday will join is family in Germany or Canada I KNOW IT FOR A FACT!
To those social media warriors, hosting live @Facebook broadcasts, attacking other ethnic groups and blaming all that is wrong in Yorubaland on the Fulani, I wish I could laugh at your ignorance, but it isn’t funny at all. Most of you are young and you need history lessons.
To those in the Yoruba Diaspora, raising money for some imaginary war. You had better channel your funds to your village school. The primary healthcare centres need your funds. Send books! When the real war starts, they will be in Benin Republic before you say EGBE!
One of the very urgent solution is for Buhari declare that war and mobilise all the GOC’s of Nigerian Army in SW and hold them responsible in the defence of our Forest reserves, to protect both the Farmers and Herders until political leaders find a lasting solution.
Anyone deceiving you that we have a charm that can win us a war is lying. If it worked, they would have used those charms against the invaders. This is 2021, not Ogun Kiriji or the Ogedengbe wars. We need all hands-on deck to protect both visitors, settlers and all in South West of Nigeria.Yoruba are no strangers to war. But!
The article was expanded from a thread on twitter by Kayode Ogundamisi published on his twitter handle @ogundamisi on 13/2/2021