Stop conceding leadership to indolent politicians, self-appointed leaders, Alaafin tells African academia

Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi

THE Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi III, has harped on the need for the African academia and intelligentsia to be involved in leadership else they continue to allow themselves to be ruled by indolent politicians and self-appointed opinion leaders.

According to Oba Adeyemi, the claim of Africa academics and intellectuals of being educated would amount to a waste if they failed to apply their wisdom to providing solutions to the problems of underdevelopment and state collapse.

He made these statements while speaking at a conference in celebration of the 65th birthday of a Professor of African History, Toyin Falola, entitled: ‘African Knowledges and Alternative Futures’ held at Conference Centre, University of Ibadan.

Speaking, Oba Adeyemi emphasised the importance of involvement of educated Nigerians and Africans to overcome myriad of socio-economic and political challenges regarding the continent’s progress.

Especially, Oba Adeyemi said it was imperative for scholars to lead other stakeholders and segments of the society in discourses aimed at ensuring the restructuring of the country.

“The Nigerian case calls for the intellectual input of the Yoruba to re-define the nature and pattern of relationship among the diverse and seemingly disparate ethnic groups or nations in Nigeria.”

“Scholars should lead other stakeholders and segments of society to provide intellectual response to restructuring the Nigerian federation. The African academia and intelligentsia should not concede leadership in this enterprise to indolent politicians and self-appointed opinion leaders whose stock in trade is soapbox grandstanding and parliamentary rhetoric.”

“Our claim to bring educated will only be meaningful, if we acquire knowledge, internalise its values and appropriate wisdom therefrom for finding solutions to the twin problems of underdevelopment and state collapse.”
Speaking in the same vein, the Orangun of Oke-Ila, Oba Adedokun Abolarin said the essence of education was to serve others in achieving sustainable development of economies.

The event, chaired by Prof Jide Owoeye, Proprietor, Lead City University, Ibadan, was attended by scholars from different parts of Nigeria and other countries, including the President, Historical Society of Nigeria, Prof Chris Ogbogbo, and Prof. Gloria Emeagwali, a professor of History and African Studies at Central Connectticut State University, United States of America, who delivered keynote addresses.

Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun state, in his speech, condemned killings by herdsmen in various parts of Nigeria, calling on security agencies to arrest the menace.

“As a people, we need to tread carefully here on the killings by the herdsmen across the country. As bad and reprehensible as they are, they are not as deadly as the Nigerian Civil War we fought between 1967 and 1970.

“So, I condemn the herdsmen atrocities. We must go beyond that to situate what will be our reaction and response as a people and a nation. However, I am joining other well-meaning people in calling on the security agencies to bring an end to the wittiness of this act.”

“The cardinal duty of the government is the protection of lives and properties. Every life is sacred and the government should keep it so. Those who are engaged in this barbarous act should be hunted to the end of the earth, apprehended, tried and serve the full deed of the law. That should be our demand.

“We should demand the apprehension of the criminals, who torment the compatriots, and adequate judicial action should be taken against them. That is the only way we can tell Nigerians that their safety is guaranteed by the law and the government,” Aregbesola said.

Governor Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo state, represented by Secretary to the State Government, Mr Olalekan Alli, said that his administration believed in knowledge-driven government and governance as upheld by Falola, adding that the present administration would continue to place priority on knowledge-driven governance.

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