Apologise for ridiculing monarchs, Afenifere tells Obasanjo

Pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, has taken a swipe at former President Olusegun Obasanjo for allegedly undermining traditional institutions in Yoruba land.

While frowning at what they perceived as a disrespectful attitude towards monarchs by the former president at an event in Oyo State, the mainstream Yoruba group demanded an apology from Obasanjo, asking him to recognise and rectify the disrespectful manner he treated the royal fathers.

Obasanjo, in a viral video recently, was seen commanding traditional rulers in Oyo State to stand up and greet the state Governor, Seyi Makinde, at a function in Iseyin.

In a communiqué issued after a meeting held at the Akure residence of the national leader of the organisation, Pa Reuben Fasoranti, the group emphasised the immense respect that the Yoruba people hold for their traditional institutions, with traditional rulers being seen as the cornerstone of the institutions.

The communiqué, which was signed by the group’s National Publicity Secretary, Jare Ajayi, emphasised that such actions undermine the essence of the traditional institutions that have long been cherished by the Yoruba people, adding that a public apology is necessary to restore the honour and dignity of the traditional rulers, who were subjected to such treatment.

The group said: “In order to ensure the survival of Yoruba as the most important element of Yoruba culture, Yoruba should be the medium of instruction from Primary One to Three.

Afenifere also stated that Yoruba should be made compulsory for pupils and students as a way of preserving the cultural heritage of the Yoruba people.

“Thereafter, it should become a compulsory subject for every pupil in primary school and for every student in secondary school. It must be offered as one of the compulsory subjects in the school certificate examinations.”

The organisation also lamented insecurity and banditry in the country and called on the Federal Government to take some decisive steps.

The communique also reads: “On insecurity and banditry, the meeting called on the Federal Government and security agencies to be more decisive and more pro-active. Four approaches are hereby recommended for immediate consideration and action.

“Immediate deployment of anti-terrorism devices and proper motivation of security personnel; immediate engagement of local leaders in areas where insecurity is rife. Reports have it that leaders in those areas are somehow complicit in how bandits succeed in their nefarious activities.”

✍️ Adewale Momoh (Akure) and Rotimi Agboluaje (Ibadan)