As reactions both locally and internationally trail the just concluded polls in Nigeria, leader of the Pan-Yoruba sociopolitical group, Afenifere, Pa Ayo Adebanjo has declared that the group will take the case against the outcome of the February 25 presidential election to the Supreme Court.
In his address during a thanksgiving service held to commemorate his 95th birthday anniversary at St Phillip’s Anglican Church in Ogbo Ijebu, Ogun State, Adebanjo maintained that Nigerians should not allow their rights to be trampled upon, citing alleged electoral malpractices and brigandage during the exercise.
The octogenarian contended that his advocacy and struggle for a better Nigeria were not self-centred but aimed at liberating the masses from the shackles of poverty, oppression, unemployment, bad governance, and other vices.
“Don’t be afraid because we have just started the fight,” he said, urging Nigerians not to allow their rights to be trampled upon.
Adebanjo also criticized the current state of the country, saying, “This is not the Nigeria we fought for. What would the Sage, Pa Obafemi Awolowo, Late Nnamdi Azikiwe, and Sardauna of Sokoto be saying about our present abysmal state in the country? This is not how we practised politics.”
He added that the election was a “daylight robbery” marred by violence and needless killings, and those who said they should stop pursuing the matter failed to understand that this was not his fight but that of the masses. “It is not my concern if Peter Obi of the Labour Party becomes the president. What would he offer me at this age? But, I am fighting for the masses,” he said.
Adebanjo further explained that Afenifere was not a member of the Labour Party, but the party stood for the ideals of Afenifere. He stated that he wanted liberation for Nigerians, and the APC could not claim to be fighting for the cause of the Yoruba more than Afenifere or himself.
He concluded by emphasizing that Afenifere would not relent or falter in its commitment to the enthronement of justice, fairness, and equity. He said,
“Even if it remains only five of us in Afenifere, we would continue the fight and struggle for a better and viable Nigeria as Baba Obafemi Awolowo taught us.”
Meanwhile, dignitaries at the birthday ceremony include former President Olusegun Obasanjo, former deputy governor of Ogun State, Senator Gbenga Kaka, Senator Femi Okunrounmu, and chieftains of Afenifere, among others.