The Leader of the umbrella body of Yoruba self-determination groups, Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, Professor Banji Akintoye, has called on Yoruba people across the globe not to lose hope on the actualization of the agitated Oduduwa Republic, a sovereign nation for the Southwestern Nigerians.
The renowned historian and Second Republic senator stated this on Saturday, in a statement made available to the press by Mr Maxwell Adeleye, the Communications Secretary of the Self-Determination Movement.
Akintoye, who marked his 87th birthday yesterday, said he had pleaded with his loyalists who wanted to celebrate his birthday anniversary to do otherwise, saying he cannot be celebrating when Igboho, the pioneer of the freedom movement, was still in detention.
According to him, the Nigerian Government lacked the capacity to criminalize the struggle, stressing that the agitation is beyond the manipulation of the current government.
The statement reads in part, “My message to all Yoruba people across the world who are passionate for the country of their own is not to lose hope.
“I am very much convinced that we are on our way to freedom. Our agitation is an idea whose time has come.
“We shall keep the struggle alive, and beyond the manipulation of the Nigerian government.
“We won’t allow the Federal Government of Nigeria to criminalize our struggle. The Yoruba people worldwide are urged never to be deterred in the struggle.
“Many Yoruba patriots worldwide planned to celebrate my birthday but I pleaded with them not to do so in honour of my son and one of the heroes of our struggle, Chief Sunday Adeyemo, fondly called Sunday Ighoho, by all of us. I cannot be celebrating a birthday when Igboho is in detention”.