On Saturday, the birth of a new conglomerate of Yoruba self-determination groups, Yoruba World Assembly, was announced at a press conference held at the NUJ press centre, Ibadan.
In his address, the chief convener and secretary-general of the group, Comrade Victor Taiwo explained that the emergence of the group was informed by “the failure of previous attempts at the emancipation and security of Yoruba land.”
“For all we know, Nigeria is witnessing the twilight of her existence with the fast decimation of all the instruments and structures of governance into a comatose state.
“Most especially among the myriad of evils bedeviling the citizens of this country is the insecurity to lives and property where human live can be likened to a dozen for kobo. No more sanctity for lives. Worst of human degradation spree are the herdsmen’s attacks on the people and their transgressions on the peoples’ lands across the country.
“Now, looking at the state of helplessness the Yorubas have found themselves for some time now, we quickly did an analysis of our state and we discovered our bane to be the lack of unity among the various organizations and as well as lack of controlling or coordinating leadership. Thus we need a forum for the convergence of all progressive and good-intentioned groups for united and central coordination under a credible leadership.
“That’s what we are all gathered here to do. Each of us is a leader in his or her own right, and collectively we can provide credible and dependable leadership to our people who are now living in fear and seeming helplessness.”
In his keynote address, the interim chairman of the group’s governing council, Dr. Tayo Ayorinde explained that the group will not be built around individuals or splinter associations noting that “it is an association for the upliftment of our youths and betterment of the Yorubas.”
“Unfortunately, some things have happened in the past. We have noticed that we Yorubas are not united, we want to make sure that we call everybody to talk together. I belong to the National Development Summit and you will see us talking with one voice but this is not the case with the Yorubas but we have decided that this has to change.
“We don’t want to be part of the regime that is retrogressive anymore,” he said.
Speaking on the position of Professor Banji Akintoye as the ‘leader of the Yorubas’, Dr. Ayorinde stated that the Professor removed himself from the group and as a result of this he stands removed.
“Banji Akintoye has let down the over 100 associations that selected him as the leader of the Yoruba nation,” he added.