Afenifere Says National Confab More Important Than 2015 Elections


The pan-Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, yesterday declared that the 2015 general elections is not as important as the proposed national conference which is slated for early next year.

The group also accused those against the convocation of a national conference as being behind calls for the impeachment of President Goodluck Jonathan.

Afenifere made the disclosure on Friday at the State House Abuja, after a closed door meeting with Mr. Jonathan.

Leader of the group, Chief Reuben Fasoranti, who led a delegation of the group to the presidential villa, warned President Jonathan to expect more resistance to the national conference in form of letter writings and calls for his impeachment.

According to Fasoranti, “forces that have benefitted from the imbalance and inequity of decades would not fold their arms and watch Nigeria restructured into an entity that works for all its component units. This is why all manners of “letters” were posted to you with “impeachment” calls. Expect more of that as the process moves on by those who want the National Dialogue aborted.

“Afenifere considers the National Conference as the soul of a new Nigeria and as such much more important than anything in the polity, 2015 election inclusive.

“That is why we are strongly advising that the conference be concluded early so that the 2015 elections can be conducted on the basis of the new constitution.

“Finally we urge you to be more vigilant and rest assured of Afenifere’s support in the days ahead for as long as you are committed to give Nigeria a proper National Conference which you re-emphasised when you received the report of the Advisory Committee two days ago.

“We believe the time has come for us to sit and find lasting solutions from the stakeholders across Nigeria to our challenges as against temporary reliefs that bring greater and long-lasting sorrows which some letter writers and their group have given us since 1966″, he said.

Speaking in the same vein, Afenifere Publicity Secretary, Mr. Yinka Odumakin while interacting with State House correspondents after the meeting with the president said that “the national conference was very important to the group because we believe Nigeria today is at crossroad where we must not take the wrong turn.

”Since 1960 the country has taken a wrong turn at critical junction. But for the first time we have an opportunity to discuss Nigeria to take far-reaching decisions on how to move this country forward. And we have seen what is happening in the polity that because this fundamental change is about to take place in this country, the forces that have held this country by the jugular since 1956 they are congregating. All manner of letter are flying here and there, impeachment call here and there because they want to abort this national Conference.

“We have assured the president that for as long as he remains focus to give us a proper national conference, Aferenifere will always support him. And he has assured us that this conference is more important to him than any other thing in the country today. And we appreciate the way, the spirit and the level at which he is thinking, which put us on the same wave length.

“I want to emphasis that for as long as he stays focus on the national conference agenda, yoruba nation, Afenifere will support him, because we believe that this is the most important thing at this stage to serve Nigeria from disintegrating. Centrifugal forces are all over the place and we must make sure we make Nigeria in a way that works. That is what we have come to do and that is why we are here”, he said.

The Afenifere delegation to the presidential villa included the governor of Ondo state, Dr Olusegun Mimiko, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, chief Olaniwun Ajayi, Senator Iyiola Omisore and Supo Sonibaire among others.





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