Alaafin of Oyo, Gani Adams urge return to regionalism
The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III and the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams, yesterday, said until Nigeria returns to regionalism, the nation’s progress would remain a mirage.
They stated this at the opening ceremony of the 50th anniversary of the Yoruba Studies Association of Nigeria (YOSAN) held at Otunba Subomi Balogun Conference, University of Ibadan, Oyo State.
Oba Adeyemi said the military incursion in Nigeria’s political space in 1966 had since remained the country’s albatross, adding that the South-West had, before the coup, enjoyed great and tremendous progress in all sectors, including education, health, economy and others.
He, however, said that only regionalism could guarantee the future of the country and save it from imminent collapse.
He also said that the Yoruba remained the first race in Nigeria to have experienced tremendous progress and exposure, adding that such feats were made possible through quality education, and the transformation of the region in the 60s.
The Alaafin, however, urged all the governors in South-West to promote the use of Yoruba language during plenaries, as it is done in Lagos and Ondo states respectively.
On his part, the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland said the Yoruba had all it takes to achieve whatever the race is determined to achieve.
Prof. Tayo Adesina, who spoke on the topic: “Yoruba Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow,” commended the late Samuel Johnson, who described Yoruba as a people that speak common and related languages.
The don said from the historical perspective of the past, Yoruba race had the potential to drive the contemporary problems of today, adding that the Yoruba are a blessed race with futurist leaders like the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, who for a very long time had a vision of true Yoruba nation.
Earlier in his address President of the association, Prof. Duro Adeleke, said the association was established about 50 years ago to address the deficit in the use of Yoruba language, adding that the gathering would come up with a positive policy programme that will help in advancing the cause of the language across the world.
Also, Prof. Bisi Ogunsina, in his remarks, said the Yoruba have succeeded in being the first in every aspect.