YORUBA Rights Activist, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, has urged Yoruba people to defend themselves when attacked, saying all he wants is peace in Yorubaland.
Igboho spoke, yesterday, when former minister of Aviation and chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Femi Fani-Kayode, visited him at his Soka, Ibadan residence in Oyo State.
He spoke as Fani-Kayode asked the Federal Government to allow all Nigerians carry fire arms, if the government could make a case for Fulani herdsmen to carry AK-47 rifles to protect themselves and their cows.
After a three-hour closed door meeting with the former minister, Igboho said: “I don’t have anything to say for now, my uncle (Fani-Kayode) has said everything for me. What we want in Yorubaland is peace. We don’t want banditry, we don’t want Fulani herdsmen to continue to kill our people, we want our people to be free.
“My message to my people in Yorubaland is that they must try to defend themselves. Don’t let anyone come to your farm or your home to kill you, you must try to defend yourself, which was what the minister said too.”
On his part, Fani-Kayode, who said Yoruba people are behind Igboho in his recent actions against Fulani herdsmen, added: “A good friend of mine, the Governor of Bauchi State, Bala Mohammed. We served together as ministers, said a few days ago that Fulani herdsmen should be given the right to carry AK-47. I disagree with that but that was his opinion and, like I told him, he is entitled to his opinion and he can voice it.
“If you go by that principle, then it makes absolute sense that if Fulani are allowed to carry AK-47 to defend their cows and their lives if they feel threatened, then it is also logical for members of the local communities, farmers and each and every one of us should also have that right to defend ourselves against killer Fulani herdsmen and against those that are coming to kill us and rape our women.”
“I am totally and completely behind that and I will like that very much. Why not? We are responsible and decent people, the Americans have that right, it is enshrined in their constitution and if it is also that we could carry arms, perhaps we won’t have the kind of atrocities that are being committed throughout the country and not just throughout the South, even in the North itself. I must tell you, it is unbelievable what is going in terms of these killers killing members of the local population.”
“Perhaps that is one way to solve the problem, but the best way is for the government itself to rise up and do something about it. That is what we are paying them for, that is what they are there to do, let’s hope they do it and so we don’t have to do it ourselves.”
Speaking on his visit, he said: “My purpose is to come and stand side by side, shoulder by shoulder with someone I have immense respect for. He has shown the world and most importantly, he has shown Yoruba people that we are not cowards, we are not people who can be pushed around, we are not people who can be pillaged, killed and raped, and those that perpetrate this crime feel at ease in our land.”
“So, I have come to express my appreciation and solidarity with somebody that I believe has done the right thing without violating any laws in this country because that is very important. I don’t believe he has done that.” “I believe it is right and proper for every Yoruba leader to show appreciation for the lives he has saved and for his pursuits of people that have been committing crimes, that is the first purpose.”
“The second purpose is also to let him know that his message of peace and unity, that is to say, he has nothing against Fulani people but he has everything against criminals that come to our forest in this part of the country to kill, those are his enemies, those are the people that are our collective enemies and that is what he is fighting against and there is nothing unlawful in that.”