Yorubas in diaspora join call for restructuring

National Coordinator of Oodua People's Congress, Otunba Gani Adams
National Coordinator of Oodua People’s Congress, Otunba Gani Adams

Odua Progressive Union (OPU), Europe chapter has called for the immediate restructuring of Nigeria along regional line, saying this would enhance the development of the country and rescue her from imminent crash.

This was just as OPU Convener and National Coordinator of the Odua Peoples’ Congress (OPC), Otunba Gani Adams, suggested the adoption of “mutual understanding and Compromise” to make the country’s democracy workable.

The diaspora group made the demand in a communique issued after its 3rd Europe Summit in Gothenburg, Sweden, which took place at the weekend.

The group, in the communique signed by its Europe Coordinator, Chief Victor Adewale, among other decisions, expressed its supports for call for restructuring and devolution of power in the country, even as it also “globally seeks, wants and supports that Nigeria be structured via regional line.”

“It is an understatement that Nigeria is a failed nation, and there is urgent need for all stakeholders to come together and determine how the future should be tackled, the numerous issues confronting the nation should be addressed and all agitations from various interests should be promptly treated,” the communique said.

“The position of European Union of OPU is clear, we throw our weight behind those who clamour for regional integration so that Nigeria will be restructured via regional lines using the six geo political zones as a model. Devolution of power from the centre to regions should also be the song on our lips now,” the group added.

The group insisting that it had a role to play in reshaping the country, saying it was mindful of what was expected of it despite the fact that its members were outside the country.

“And for now we don’t have voting rights, but our voice, position and recommendations can influence what is happening at home,” the group said in the communique.

Speaking further, the body enjoined Yorubas in diaspora to be evangelists of the Yoruba culture and ensure that the interest of the Yoruba nation was protected at all times.

It, however, lauded the collaboration of its sister body, Odua Peoples’ Congress (OPC) with the Nigeria Police to flush the dreaded Badoo cultist group out of Ikorodu in Lagos State.

OPU Convener, Otunba Adams, who is also National Coordinator of OPC, in his keynote address, expressed the pleasure to be re-united with his fellow natives in the diaspora.

He said the OPU had no doubt provided a veritable platform for the Oodua descendants living far away from their home land to constantly interact on issues of common interest, especially as it affected the Yoruba race in particular and the country, Nigeria in general.

Speaking further, Otunba Adams said while it was a thing of joy to bear witness to the tremendous progress that OPU, as a body, had witnessed globally as it now operated effectively in 78 countries of the world in celebration, he lamented that it was unfortunate that same could not be said about Nigeria where things had seriously retrogressed.

He, however, said the consolation was that, “the efforts of all of us here, if offered in unison, can salvage our country from imminent crash.”

Otunba Adams thus canvassed for the adoption of “mutual understanding and Compromise” strategies used by the Swedish to accomplish the political and economic progress being witnessed in their democracy.

He recalled, “When the Swedish Social Democratic Party came into power in 1932, its leaders introduced a new political decision-making process, which later became known as ‘The Swedish model’. The party took a central role, but tried as far as possible to base its policy on mutual understanding and compromise.”

“There is no gainsaying that Nigeria has what it takes to be a welfare state in its real sense with her natural endowments, but she must take a cue from Sweden and adopt the main ingredients of her body polity which absence in the Nigeria system have remained its albatross – that is mutual understanding and compromise.”

“It is my candid opinion that only if we had been able to factor and accommodate these two ingredients into our governing system like in Sweden, there wouldn’t have been reason for the ear itching call for the breakup of Nigeria as we are witnessing at the moment,” the OPU initiator opined.

Guest lecturer at the event, Saad Muhialdeen, in his paper, titled, “Leadership and Mentoring” said leadership was not only about being the head but also about showing direction and being a positive game changer.

The guest lecturer praised the Yorubas for being the most focal, conscious and well exposed race in Africa, just as he enumerated the shinning lights of the black community in Europe as being traced to Nigeria and Yoruba in particular.

He praised OPU for its effort towards the preservation of their culture and tradition.

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