A public affairs analyst and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, Hon. Demola Ijabiyi, has thrown his support behind the call of the Yoruba World Congress, now rebranded Ilana Omo Oduduwa, for the renegotiation of the amalgamation of 1914 that merged the southern and the northern protectorates to form the country.
In a statement, the President-General of the Congress, Emeritus Prof. Banji Akintoye, had invited some international bodies to come forward to facilitate the negotiation. These included the United Nations, the European Union, the African Union, the United States, the United Kingdom, the Commonwealth, and others.
Ijabiyi noted that while advocating this renegotiation, the Congress had observed that most Nigerians were already coming to various conclusions and demands and that the Yoruba, of the Nigerian South West, a Nation it estimated to have 55 million people, wanted a peaceful resolution of what it described as the convoluted Nigerian problems and the widely devastating insecurity in the country.
It therefore advocated not restructuring but negotiation by the nationalities, defined by it as the owners of the various ancestral homelands that constitute the country.
Agreeing with this position, Ijabiyi said, “The bottom line is that Nigeria is no longer working. It is defective structurally and politically. Its various parts are in disequilibrium with one another. The entire structure does not have the capacity to accommodate these parts at the same rates of development and with cultural harmony. The result is manifested in the creation and contraction of various means, policies and instruments to superficially compel and sustain the country’s unity which ought to have been taken for granted after over one hundred years of the amalgamation.
”Worse still, the constitution cannot be used to redress the situation as it is part of the problem. It gives the nation a federal system of government and yet contains provisions that promote unitarianism. It is, therefore, time for us to take a look at ourselves by going back to our roots which was the amalgamation of 1914. We can end up with a new structure, we can end up with a new system of government but we can also end up creating two or more countries from this country. The most important thing is for every nationality in the country to come out happy and satisfied. Without this, the agitations will continue and its stoppage through coercion by the government would, according to Pastor E.A. Adeboye, drive the young people underground and thereby make the situation unmanageable.
“The youths have refused to go underground. They have become more defiant, daring and rebellious. Anarchy is now staring us in the face. We must know that the agitations are not really about police brutality but about the national question that breeds that brutality. It is this question that the renegotiation of the 1914 amalgamation must answer,” Ijabiyi added