We the Yoruba believe we did not join the Nigerian Union voluntiarily, but rather were coerced into Nigeria by the British, first in the Southern and Northern Protectorates and later in the larger Nigeria state through the Amalgamation of 1914, the present balkanization of the Yoruba people in artificial states and geographical zones, which resulted from a long period of degenerate political evolution presents a great constrain to our people. Simply put, the aspiration of the yoruba people for self identity, progress and peaceful development cannot be fulfilled within Nigeria as presently constituted. Nigreia is not a nation and never in the past had there been any serious attempt to build a nation out of the contraption.
The current effort towards a national Conference by the President Goodluck Jonathan administration is suspicious as it is glaring that the president lacks the will and the sincerity of purpose to midwife a genuine conference. But as a people imbued with the core values of consensus building, peaceful co-existence , moderation and cooperation mong the various peoples in Nigeria, we strongly hold that we must not fail to seize upon every moment that offers the opportunity to address the crises of nigeria and thereby stem the tide of an impending implosion.
Therefore, knowing that the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan has orgasnised a National Conference scheduled to commence on February 20, 2014 and acutely aware of the need of Yoruba people to find common ground in participating in the National conference, prominent Yoruba interest groups convoked a YORUBA CONSTITUTIONAL CONFERENCE today, Wednesday February 12, 2014 at the House of Chiefs, Secretariat of Oyo State Government, Ibadan. The conference had in attendance prominent sons and daughters of Yoruba extraction including:
Otunba Olabiyi Durojaiye
Chief Iyiola Oladokun
Hon. Wale Oshun
Chief Niyi Akintola
Professor Ademola Ariyo
Professor Dayo Oyekole
Professor Kola Owolabi
Dr (Mrs) Keziah Awosika
General O.K Fasasi
General R.A Adeshina
Chief Segun Odegbami
Mr Ayo Afolabi
Mrs Jumoke Anifowoshe
Mr. Tunde Fagbenle
Mr Tunde Odanye
Alagba Moshood Erugbami
Chief Ayo Abereoran
Comrade Razaq Olokooba
Following the welcome and opening addresses; the keynote address with the theme ‘’What Nigeria And Its Federating Units Are Losing By Not Restructuring’’ and delivered by Mr. Kayode Samuel, animated discussions on the theme of the conference and other issues of relevance to the place and status of the Yoruba within the Nigerian Nation State, the following were adopted as resolutions:
1. That we, the yoruba prefer a union federated regions, each of which shall be at liberty to retain, modify or completely alter the present artificial, atomistic state structure.
2. Yoruba people indigenous in the present Kwara, Kogi, Edo, and Delta States and whose territories are contiguous with the rest of Yorubaland must belong to the same regional government as the rest of the Yoruba in Nigeria.
3. That the parliametary system of government is preferred as it is less unweildly and expensive to operate when compared to the Presidential sysytem.
4. That we insist on each of the regions in the envisaged Federal Union of Regions having its own Regional Constitution, as was the case in the 50’s and 60’s.
5. That the right to delf determination on and up to the right to secede as contained in the onstitutions of some other members of the United Nations like the United States of America and Ethiopia should be entrenched in envisaged constitution of the Federal Union.
6. That consistent with our rejection of fiscal parasitism, we insist that each region shall have and exercise control over it’s natural resources, subject only to payment of 25% of net earnings therefrom to the government of the union.
7. That the present Nigeria Police force be abolished and in its place a new policing sysytem, reflecting the true character of a Federal Union i.e Union Police, State/Regional police, Community police e.t.c is prefered, i.e decentralization of policing powers.
8. That the Armed forces in the new Nigeria Federation shall be organized on the basis of strong Regional Commands.
9. That should the aforementioned be unacceptable to other ethnic nationalities in Nigeria, we Yoruba shall interprete this to mean their forceful rejection and from present Nigerian State.
10. Finally, that Yoruba Constitutional Conference mandates General Alani Ipoola Akinrinade to immediately organize and convene an all inclusive Pan-YORUBA Conference for the purpose of spelling out the details of the Yoruba approach to the National Conference.