A coalition of Yoruba groups in the diaspora, under the aegis of Yoruba One Voice (YOV) has declared that no amount of intimidation or harassment would make agitators to back off the campaign for self- determination for Oodua Republic ,
The coalition stated that Yoruba people all over the world not relent in their irrevocable campaign for self-determination.
The group made the declaration in an 8- point communique it issued at the end of the webinar conference themed: “The State of Yoruba Nation,” organised to mark its one year anniversary.
YOV held that the agitators’ right to campaign for self-determination was entrenched in Article 1 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on People’s Right.
The Yoruba diaspora group also called for an immediate referendum to be supervised by the United Nations (UN) on the right to self- determination by Yoruba Nation.
“We urge Yoruba people all over the world not to relent in the irrevocable campaign for Self Determination for Yoruba people.
“That the Yoruba Nation resolve to forge ahead with renewed zeal for the right to self determination as entrenched in Article 1 of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on People’s Right.
“Immediate referendum to be supervised by the United Nations, (UN) on the right to self determination by Yoruba Nation,” YOV said.
Earlier, in his opening speech, the Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Abiodun Ige Adams, urged other like-mind groups both within and outside the shores of Nigeria to join Yoruba One Voice in the quest for the liberation of Yoruba race,saying his position as the Grand Patron of the largest Yoruba organization in the diaspora is strategic to avail others well- meaning Yoruba sons and daughters the opportunity to play their roles in complementing the efforts of all the members.
Adams,while urging the international community to support the call for Yoruba self determination agenda,noted also that with the achievements made so far by the organization, it is obvious that there will light at the end of the tunnel.
Going down the memory lane, one of the guest lecturers Prof. Ayodeji Agbonjinmi; from Department of Public and International Law; Faculty of Law;Ajayi Crowther University, Oyo, in his remarks said the Yoruba had in Nigeria’s history became the victims of political instability in Nigeria.
Agbojinmi cited the past history and previous experiences of the late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, as the former premier of the western region, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo as a former president and the late MKO Abiola as the only president that was elected that never ruled.
He said Yoruba had always been at the receiving end, maintaining that YOV had made remarkable move to determine the fate of the Yoruba race in the political milieu.
Meanwhile Prof. Salawu Akeem Segun, from Department of Linguistics and African Languages, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, who was the second guest lecturer at the event, said in his remarks that there is nothing bad in seeking self determination, saying the idea is a process that must mature in time, even as he added that the Yoruba will always seek self determination or devolution of power to region.
While reading the communique, YOV Secretary General,Dr. Sina Okanlomo,said the organization will not relent in his effort to change the ugly narratives in Nigeria, insisting that the Yoruba have all it takes to decide on the best way to go.
Erelu Abike,in her vote of thanks messages lauded the commitment of all the guests including the moderator, Mr. Babajide Akinremi,
even as she appreciated the efforts of all the members of the YOV across the six continents of the world as well as that of the YOV first year anniversary planning committee for providing the platform for an all- inclusive discourse.