The pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, on Tuesday condemned the statement credited to the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, over the issue of insecurity, especially kidnapping in the South West and some other parts of the country.
The group alleged that the VP said on Sunday in the United States of America that the kidnapping incidents in the South West were politically motivated. The Afenifere described the statement as unfortunate and provocative.
This was contained in the communique issued at the end of the monthly meeting of Afenifere, held at the residence of its leader of the group, Pa. Reuben Fasoranti in Akure, the Ondo State capital. The communique was read by the National Publicity Secretary of the association, Mr. Yinka Odumakin.
The group said it was overwhelmed by the reports of the traumatisation of the Yoruba people, allegedly by the Fulani herdsmen who were kidnappers and militia, all across the six states in the South-West as well as Kwara and Kogi States.
The group said, “All the reports provided clear indications of failure of the state as the security forces are largely incapable or unwilling to safeguard the lives of our people against these criminals as we are not aware of any of them that has been arrested or is under trial at the moment just as all the Federal Government has done so far is to make excuses for the Boko Haram and Miyetti Allah groups that have been accused of so many crimes against the people of Nigeria.
“It is against this backdrop that the meeting was scandalised by the opportunistic and provocative utterances of Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo in NewYork on Sunday dismissing the danger we are faced in Yorubaland as well as by other zones in Nigeria as being “politically motivated .”
“As if he is unaware that we are in a digital world, which explains why America and Britain have issued travel directives to their citizens not to travel to more than 2/3 of Nigeria, the VP without much thought for his integrity stated that: ‘With respect to general kidnapping which we have seen in parts of the country, again, this is not entirely new. In fact, some of the kidnapping stories you read or listen to are simply not true anywhere, some are fueled by politics.”
Describing the alleged Osinbajo’s comments as unfortunate, Afenifere alleged that the vice president had shamed the Yoruba people with “his very cheap politicking with the lives of Nigerians.”
It stated further, ” Aside from the daily tales of horror across Yorubaland in the hands of these Fulani marauders, the meeting (Afenifere) would like Osinbajo to answer the following questions: Is the report of the kidnap of a District Head from President Buhari’s town from May 1 (2019) till date politically motivated? Was the President speaking of another country when he handed kidnappers on the rampage to God?
“Was the former Health Minister, Prof. Isaac Adewole, playing politics when it was announced that his son was kidnapped? What politics was afoot when the Ondo State Governor recently announced that his convoy was waylaid by kidnappers?
“If he cannot answer these questions, he should kneel before his God and ask for forgiveness for violating ‘Thou shall not lie’ commandment.
We further admonish him not to allow whatever ambition and political interest he serves to push him to make such infuriating comments as the number one man in the country again.”
The group called on President Muhammadu Buhari to be more proactive on the issue of security in the country. It said the President should ” separate the office of the President of Nigeria which he occupies from being also the grand patron of Miyetti Allah which we suspect makes it very difficult for security agents to go after members of this group whenever they commit or are accused of crimes.”