Yorubas have never been united politically as one people. Never spoken with one voice. They are easily bought and cowered with money and positions. They have played and continue to play the role of Brutus in Nigeria’s political history.
Politically, they are sheep led by bunch of disarray and disunited corrupt politicians (please stop calling them leaders) looking for green and fertile grazing field to fatten their own cows. For those of you who are too young or don’t know your history, Egbe Afenifere was the Yoruba equivalent name given to Action Group (AG) founded by the sage Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
The populist, socialist, progressive, and visionary programs of Awo as he was fondly called and the AG, gave the party the true meaning of Afenifere. That was then. With the demise of AG and other post-colonial political parties in Nigeria, the new Afenifere which I refer to as Afenifebi in parentheses in my title, literally means people who wish people bad. Afenifere was resurrected by some Yoruba politicians riding on the coat tails of the erstwhile AG and most importantly, on Awo’s name to make money and feed their greed.
Not very long ago, the Afenifebis because they could not agree as one, because their eyes are bigger than their stomachs, and because they are concerned with their individual economic security as opposed to the general good of Yoruba people and Nigerians in general for which Awo’s Afenifere stood for; they became fractured and factionalized and engage themselves in bitter fight for their piece of corruption pie from each successive federal government.
The latest discordant Babel noises from Afenifebi camps are from Ayo Fasanmi Afenifebi group which has endorsed Buhari for second term, while Fasoranti Afenifebi demands that Buhari publicly declare his assets. None of the two factions represent Yoruba people, their aspirations, and collective good.
The present Yoruba politicians is populated by cowards. This is evident by their prevarication on all important national issues. Their cowardice to stand up as one and articulate the fears and concerns of Yorubas about Buhari’s imperial presidency portrays them as sick people endorsing sick presidency!
I believe the Afenifebis have failed to unify and rally Yorubas around a common cause. They have refused to move in the best interest of Yorubas. They are too afraid to take a stand because it is politically expedient to remain fractured, factionalized, confused and get lost as it were.
There’s no person among them with spine, the moral constitution to convince the rest of Nigerians that Yorubas aremen and women are Omoluabis. The Afenifebis are Yorubas built not for leading, not for protecting the rights of our people, but only to protect their political spoils.
The cowardice of Afenifebis to take a stand as one united front and speak with unambiguous language will be an indelible and damning part of their legacy. But one thing I’m sure of: history doesn’t forget the noisy voices once the dust settles, the winners and losers. When our history is written, we will celebrate those who exhibited bravery, and we will decide the aggressively malignant. We will cheer the heroic.
History says that leaders who let their people down at times like these are the ones who run and hide in the woods until the dust settles. Political self-preservation in dire circumstances is just about the same as cowardice… Let’s go there!