Plans to forge a common front for the Yoruba nation is no mere talk but a well coordinated exercise to integrate people of Southwest Nigeria, Governor Ayodele Fayose has inferred.
He alluded to this at the inauguration of Olu Akeredolu as governor of Ondo State on Friday in Akure.
Fayose’s comments reinforce recent strategic moves made by governors of Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Ondo and Ekiti States to pursue a fresh regional project named Development Agenda of Western Nigeria, (DAWN Commission). Early meetings were held in Ibadan while the second gathering was hosted by Fayose in Ekiti State.
Justifying his presence at Akeredolu’s inauguration on Friday in Akure, Fayose said, “This is a Nigerian affairs. When a governor is sworn in we have to support him. We are talking of regional integration and unity and Akeredolu is one of us. We have to support him and electioneering has come and gone and a winner has emerged and we have to work together in the spirit of the people of our region.
“We cannot play politics with the welfare of the people of our region. We have to support Akeredolu to make the difference. This is a matter of the Yoruba nation and after Nigeria, Yoruba nation comes first. We don’t need to play politics with the welfare of Yoruba people.”
Fayose’s comments were not far from the remarks he made at the Ibadan DAWN meeting. He had said, “All states, including Ekiti, have subscribed to and agreed that regional integration is the best way forward. We must do everything humanly possible not to go back on our resolves. It is forward for the people and for the Yoruba race.”
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However, speaking on the chances of his party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the forthcoming gubernatorial poll slated for 2018, Fayose said, “I am the main issue of the APC. They don’t have my size. They are wearing babaringa and they don’t have the size of my cloth. The other time we gave them 16-0 and this time around, if it possible to get a local government from another state, we will give them 17-0 in the 2018 governorship election.”
Fayose remains the most ardent critic of the Buhari-led All Progressives Congress government.
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