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Yoruba self-determination groups ask courts to stop Ekiti, Osun, 2023 general elections

By Timothy Agbor (Osogbo) and Rotimi Agboluaje (Ibadan)
17 March 2022   |   4:10 am
No fewer than 17 Yoruba self-determination activists have urged two federal high courts sitting in Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State and Osogbo, Osun State, to stop the governorship elections slated to hold in the two states and the 2023 general elections.

Say without a referendum, 1999 Constitution is illegal, invalid
No fewer than 17 Yoruba self-determination activists have urged two federal high courts sitting in Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State and Osogbo, Osun State, to stop the governorship elections slated to hold in the two states and the 2023 general elections.

The Yoruba nation agitators, who are leaders and members of the umbrella body of Yoruba self-determination groups, Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, also prayed the courts to declare that the current 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended) is illegal, invalid and of no effect whatsoever because no referendum was conducted before it was enacted.

The activists, led by the leader of Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, Prof. Banji Akintoye, his Deputy, Prof. Wale Adeniran; Chief Bayo Orire and 14 others, urged a total decommissioning of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria to pave way for a referendum so that the indigenous people of Yorubaland can decide on their nationhood, first and foremost.

The suits, according to a statement made available to newsmen yesterday by the Communications Secretary of Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, Mr. Maxwell Adeleye, were filed on behalf of the activists by their lawyer, Mr. Tolu Babaleye, while the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) are defendants.

Adeleye said that “the activists prayed the courts for a categorical order that, against the backdrop that the current constitution is illegal and invalid because no referendum was conducted before it was enacted, INEC does not have the law that can be used to conduct elections anywhere in Yorubaland, a region within Nigeria, thus, the forthcoming Ekiti and Osun governorship polls and all future elections should be stopped in Yorubaland until a referendum is held for the Yoruba people to decide on the system they want for themselves within Nigeria and whether they even want to remain as Nigerians.”

The groups, therefore, urged all Yoruba people, especially self-determination activists in Ekiti and Osun states, to mobilise themselves and ensure that they are present in courts in Osogbo and Ado-Ekiti whenever the cases are called for mention.