The President-General of the Yoruba World Congress, Prof. Banji Akintoye, said on Wednesday that the over 55 million Yoruba people in the South-West would get freedom by having the sovereign Yoruba nation without breaking the law of Nigeria or shedding blood.
Akintoye stated this at the YWC House in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, during the celebration of the anniversary of the Kiriji War, which happened over 130 years ago.
The retired don said, “We have been saying we will have the Yoruba nation. The Yoruba World Congress is committed to helping the Yoruba nation to secure its position in the comity of nations.”
Stressing the significance of the struggle, he said, “When we first started the process, we had a total of 45 organisations, but now, we can boast of a total of 107 different organisations.
“They do say that I don’t compromise; it is not every time. But once we say we will take a common stance, I don’t know how to betray. We will get the Yoruba nation free without violence; we will not break the laws of Nigeria. If there is anyone who wants to be violent, we will tell them, no.”
On the proposed rally fixed for October 1 by some youths, he said they reserved the rights to stage the rally, but warned against violence.
The leader of the Movement for Oduduwa Republic, Mr Akin George, stressed on unity among the Yoruba.
He said, “We can’t fight the enemies if the home front is divided. We may have misunderstanding, but it should not lead to a quarrel.”
Other dignitaries at the celebration were High Chief Lekan Balogun, the Otun Olubadan who represented the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji; the Convener, Yoruba Koya, Otunba Deji Osibogun, among others.