The pan-Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere; Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Uche Secondus, and the African Action Congress on Sunday faulted a statement credited to Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo that the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari in the 2019 presidential election would guarantee South-West Presidency in 2023.
Osinbajo, who on Saturday went on a house-to-house campaign in Oyo, Oyo State, and held a 45-minute closed-door meeting with the Alaafin, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, said the 2019 presidential election mattered to the Yoruba people of the South-West because the geopolitical zone had a larger interest in 2023.
“Yoruba have a lot to contribute to Nigeria for the 2019 elections. It is for us, Yoruba; if you understand, it is for us. We are not looking at 2019, but 2023. If we don’t get it now, it may take some time again,” Osinbajo had said.
But Afenifere’s spokesperson, Mr Yinka Odumakin, in an interview with one of our correspondents, wondered what the Yoruba people had gained since Osinbajo became Vice-President.
He noted that Osinbajo had so far opposed all the things that were dear to the Yoruba people, including restructuring.
Odumakin said, “In the four years that he (Osinbajo) has been vice-president, what has he done for the Yoruba people?
“All the things that are dear to the Yoruba, he has opposed including restructuring; he has sided with the oppressors of the Yoruba people.
“When they killed the Yoruba evangelist of theRedeemed Christian Church of God under his nose in Abuja as vice-president, did he say a word? But because he wants to contest election in 2023 — himself, (Asiwaju Bola) Tinubu and (Babatunde) Fashola are fighting for election — he now remembers that he’s a Yoruba man and he wants to come and spread division among us.
“In the midst of all that we are going through, throughout Yoruba land today, beggars are all over the place. There never used to be beggars in Yoruba land. That Osinbajo is getting people to queue for N10,000.00, which is insulting and a mockery of poverty, shows how much these people have destroyed the lives of our people.”
The Afenifere spokesman restated that in 2019, what the Yoruba wanted was restructuring of Nigeria by means of true federalism.
He noted that the Yoruba would only support a candidate with plans for restructuring.
“We have had an eight-year presidency. The Ijaw have had six years. The North have had more than everybody. But what is their lot? It’s poverty.
“We don’t want to stay under this arrangement. The arrangement we want is where we will have control over our fears and for every citizen of Nigeria to develop at their own pace.
“That is certainly what we want and that is what Buhari, Osinbajo and the All Progressives Congress have said they don’t want. We will reject that at the polls,” he said.