By Adekola Afolabi
Apparently dissatisfied with the happenings within the Pan-Yoruba Social Political Organisation, Afenifere, the leaders of the organisation met at the Akure residence of their National Leader, Chief Reuben Fasoranti, with a view to finding a lasting solution to the current impasse in the group.
At the meeting which was at the instance of Pa Fasoranti, a peace committee was set up to reconcile all aggrieved members and to bring back peace and unity into the organization.
In his opening remarks, Pa Fasoranti bemoaned the happenings in the group in the last two years since he hosted the organization in his residence, and emphasised the need to find a lasting solution that will propel Afenifere to greater heights to fulfill its mandate of being the vanguard for Yoruba race.
“Since I appointed my brother, Chief Ayo Adebanjo and Oba Oladipo Olaitan as acting leader and deputy leader respectively about three years ago, a lot has happened. Among these is the fact that many of us have added more years to our lives. While we have been blessed in many ways by the Almighty God, it is also on record that we have lost some of our people. We commiserate with the families of those concerned while we pray for the rest of us to enjoy the grace of God for many more years and many more decades for the younger ones in our midst.
“In addition to these, a noticeable drift away from our core values of consultation, brotherliness and camaraderie and traditional process of conducting the business of the organization, upon which our collegial system of leadership is based, has been severely threatened. This threat has been further exacerbated by more recent events, culminating in a fracture of the traditional backbone of the organization.
“I am sorry to say, without mincing words, that our organization is in a sorry state and requires urgent restoration effort to steer it away from the current trajectory. This wasn’t my vision or expectation when I appointed the acting leader and deputy leader. And to say that I am sad and disappointed at the turn of events is an understatement.
“I am particularly disturbed because unless we take urgent remedial action, the future looks very bleak and the necessary resources to revamp our organization are being depleted by the day. I have called you here today therefore, as leaders and responsible members of this organization, to challenge yourself to find a lasting solution to the current impasse.
“I implore you to engage frankly and honestly in the spirit of comradeship and mutual respect for which we are well known and upon which this organization is founded. With determination and commitment, I believe you are all able to find a solution that will propel Afenifere to greater heights”, the Afenifere leader stressed.
After exhaustive discussion, the leaders resolved among other things that, Afenifere is to be reinvigorated to be stronger and be able to continue to fulfill its mandate of being the Vanguard for the Yoruba race.
To achieve this, a Committee is to be set up to achieve reconciliation and unity, even as they noted that Afenifere is an ideological movement and not a political party.
According to the communique, deviation from the basic Principles of Afenifere has been responsible for the undesirable turn of events in the last two years.
The communique added “Arising from the above, Afenifere is to be brought back to its core values and tradition.
” The meeting took note of Census coming up next year. It was noted that biometric method was successfully used for Voters Card registration. As such, Afenifere strongly calls on the Federal Government to make the National Population Commission to use the same Biometric Method rather than the manual method that is prone to abuse as had happened several times in the past.
Afenifere Leaders present at the meeting are the Olu of Ilu Abo, Oba Olu Falae; Basorun Seinde Arogbofa; chairman of Afenifere in Ondo state, Chief Korede Duyile, his Kwara State counterpart, Lekan Alabi; former Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko; former deputy Governor of Osun State, Sen. Iyiola Omisore; Dr. Akin Onigbinde, SAN, from Oyo State; Dr. Femi Balogun from Ekiti State; Otunba Fayemi Agbaje from Ogun state; Dare Babarinsa from Ekiti State; Akogun Kole Omololu ; Agbaakin Ademola Folarin, among several others.
In separate remarks, Dr Mimiko and Sen. Omisore expressed confidence that the committee will work to restore peace and unity back into the organization, just as they lauded the ingenuity and leadership quality of Pa Fasoranti to convey the meeting.