Yoruba mandate group calls for calm over #EndSARS protests.
A social-cultural group, Yoruba Mandate/Yoruba Development, and Unity Initiative has said it is astonished by what it described as “the evil and wicked silence of southern leaders and opinion moulders” especially of Yoruba extraction on the latest development on the EndSARS protests embarked upon by the youths across the country against police brutality and bad governance.
In a statement jointly signed by the Director-General, Operations, Otunba Femi Soluade and the Convener/General coordinator worldwide, Akogun Banji Ojo, after the worldwide meeting which held on Friday, the group appealed to the military and other security agents to follow their rule of engagements to the letter and stop the killing of defenceless and peaceful protesters but instead, protect them from thugs and hoodlums.
A statement issued after the meeting reads, “Our group which is apolitical with the sole aim and objective of serving as collaborative shadow partner to assist the government in the South West including Kogi, Kwara, Edo and Delta States respectively towards the emancipation and creating an egalitarian society for the benefit and future of our youths, have watched with keen interest the ugly scenario that followed the peaceful protests embarked upon by the youths to drive home their demands to put an end to the police brutality and bad governance in the country.
“As a non-political group, our achievable six points agenda to assist the government are better and qualitative education, economic/agriculture, medical and health care, culture/tourism, security and social services for our people in the Southwest region and by extension, Kogi, Kwara and Delta States.
“What has become a noble EndSARS protest which is legitimate has been inadvertently hijacked by some interest groups while our children are being killed, maimed, and have their limbs severed without any justification.
“The wanton destruction has become worrisome coupled with the waste of human lives as being experienced on daily basis. This must be stopped forthwith as we cannot afford to continue to fold our hands and watch the destruction of lives, properties and institutions which are our collective heritage, our future and economic base to the excitement of enemies.
“While we commend our youths for having fought a good fight for the betterment of the nation and their future, we hereby implored them to please retreat and return home and allow governments at all levels to work on their demands both in short and long term judiciously.
“Their grouse and grievances have been made known, their voices have been heard loud and clear. They should give peace a chance bearing in mind that he who fights and run away lives to fight another day.
“While we call on the PresidentMuhammadu Buhari to please at least listen to the yearnings of the protesters for a moment and use a persuasive method to calm the already volatile situation to stop the carnage, shedding innocent blood and wanton destruction of properties because when the dust are settled, every individual will be accountable for his action and inaction before God and humanity whether for personal or political gains.
“The government should as a matter of urgency find out a workable methodology to assuage their pains, look into their demands, compensate them, their families and fish out the errant officers that perpetrated the dastardly acts for peace to reign and restore the confidence of the youth in the government.
“We equally call on the United Nations, the European Union, the United States of America and other African nations to wade in and stop this carnage before it snowballed into civil war as peaceful protests have been hijacked by hoodlums and festered interest. Fifth columnists have infiltrated the rank and files of these youths fighting for their future and the nation at large.”
The group said further, “We also call on our numerous leaders of thoughts, human rights activists, opinion leaders and several Yoruba/Oduduwa groups all over the world to lend their voices as an adage says ‘a stitch in time saves nine.’
“Our southern governors should by now come together with a more pragmatic approach towards ensuring peace and ideological ways of bringing development to our region irrespective of their political affiliation. They should bear in mind that they are not going to govern over dead bodies and desolate towns.
“For those who lost their lives during the struggle, to us, they are heroes and heroines and we pray God Almighty to repose their souls and grant their families the fortitude to bear the sad and irreparable loss.”