Yoruba One Voice Canada (YOV) is a coalition of all Yoruba groups and organization's in the diaspora. The group which has branches in various countries of the world has reacted to the underserved persecution and arrest of 3 OPC members who helped rescued the Ibarapa community.
A quick recap of the incident in early 2021: The Ibarapa community raised a save-our-soul distress call about Iskilu
a Fulani warlord who had become a principality in kidnapping, killing,
raping, mutilation and oppression in the area.
The 3 OPC members: Awodele Adedigba, Dauda Kazeem and Hassan Ramon dared all odds on the 7th of March 2021 to apprehend the deadly Iskilu Wakili. This called for jubilation in the immediate community however things changed when the 3 members of the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC) was detained by the police over the arrest while Iskilu Wakili was taken to the hospital due to what the police described as his “frail appearance and state of health.”
The trio were later released sequel to the intervention of the Oyo State governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde and the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams.
Information later revealed they were rearrested and charged for conspiracy, murder and arson, and ordered them to be remanded in a correctional centre with their case file transferred to the office of the Oyo State Directorate of Public Prosecution, DPP.
That was the genesis of the twist in the narrative. Publicity Secretary of the OPC, Mr. Yinka Oguntimehin, said it was shocking for the police to accuse their 3 members of murder and arson, saying the group will seek justice against the unjust arrest, arraignment and charges of arson and murder.
The Yoruba One Voice Canada described the complacency of the Federal Government of Nigeria towards security issues as responsible for the present insecurity predicaments experienced in the country. The courts are currently not sitting hence unwarranted sufferings are inflicted on our supposed heroes in detention.
This has caused a lot of reactions from different quarters.
Reacting to the arrest, Otunba Kemi Agbeke, Publicity Secretary of YOV Canada, in a statement to Xphrame Media, condemned the detention of the 3 OPC men and described it as total injustice. She urged the Federal government of Nigeria to use their full force to tackle insecurity in the states.
She said, "Threat to peace is arresting or detaining people who are protecting or defending Yoruba people against the violent Fulani terrorists that are launching daily attacks against Yoruba land''.
She also stated that 3 OPC men are not murderers or terrorists, and they must be released immediately or be prepared for a massive protest.
In a chat with the Secretary of the YOV Canada Mrs. Yemi Foluke, She told our correspondence that with the spate of banditry, kidnapping for ransom in Nigeria, obvious inability and unwillingness of the security agencies to stem the tide, the country is at the verge of a collapse. The erudite speaker called on all well-meaning Nigerians both home and abroad to add their voices for the release of the 3 OPC members with immediate effect.
Erelu Abike Olagoke, the Director of Communications of the YOV Worldwide, also called out the Federal Government of Nigeria leadership to immediately release the 3 OPC members detained for saving the Ibarapa community from the criminal activities of the Fulani terrorists. She described the present state of Nigeria as comatose. She said this could degenerate into a massive protest if not checked immediately.
Another elder statesman, Dr Sina Okanlomo, the YOV Secretary Worldwide said this could be tantamount to anarchy over time. He said, in a civilized and sane clime, the 3 OPC members should be awarded and celebrated as heroes rather than criminalizing them. He urged the Federal Government of Nigeria to arise to the failing security structure of the country and yield to the agitations of the people for self determination.
The State Coordinator of OPC, Chief Adesina Jimoh, in an addressed to newsmen in Abeokuta said over N34. 5 million had been paid out to perpetrators of three separate abduction operations carried out within a week in the State.
OPC members recalled with pains that in the last couple of weeks, no fewer than six people, including a medical doctor and a nurse were kidnapped in separate kidnap operations at the Olubo village, along Abeokuta-Aiyetoro-Imeko road in the Yewa North local government area of the State.
The leadership of the Yoruba One Voice Worldwide have said they will not allow this to
subdue the agitations of their people “We are ready to defend the
Yoruba people against all acts of subjugation that may be perpetrated in any
forms under any guise or name: be it banditry, kidnappings, dismemberment, killings, raping of
our girls, children and women, or Fulani herdsmen’s acts of terrorism”.