OPI Misplaced Priority, Says YCE

Posted by GRANDNEWS | 1 January 1970 | 411 times

The Yoruba Council of Elders has described the Nigerian Army Operation Positive Identification (OPI) as a “misplaced priority and a distraction” at a time when kidnapping, murder, and farmer-herders clashes are rampant in the six zones of the country.

Vanguard reports that Yoruba apolitical group also condemned the signing of a bill by President Muhammadu Buhari in a foreign country.

In a communiqué issued at the end of a meeting held at its Bodija office in Ibadan on Wednesday, and read by the Secretary-General of the association, Dr. Kunle Olajide , the group said “Operation Positive Identification by the military is definitely a misplaced priority and a distraction for the military which should be busy protecting our country from invasion by ISIS and Boko Haram.

“The military can ill afford this distraction in these trying times since Nigeria is not in a state of emergency. If need be, the operation should be restricted to the North East”.

The group noted that, “YCE is not happy that President Muhammadu Buhari signed the bill in the UK when we have an effective government in place. He should have handed over to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.”

It maintained its earlier call for the restructuring of the country noting that the centralized unitary system of government is responsible for numerous challenges that the country is facing. Without addressing the issue of a unitary system of government, the resolve of President Buhari to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next ten years would remain a pipe dream. The challenges occasioned by this highly centralized system of government, include insecurity, unemployment, poverty, disease which they said were symptomatic of governance deficit.

The group called on the president to revisit the 2014 National Conference resolution and the El-Rufai Committee report on devolution of powers. The Yoruba elders called for an urgent need of economic diversification from oil and that the quickest and appropriate route is by granting autonomy to the federating units and states to explore and exploit the resources within their borders and deploy such resources according to their priorities.

The elders lamented that in 2015, insecurity challenges were limited to the North East with occasional spill to North Central and Abuja. But, in 2019, though Book Haram has been largely decimated, insecurity has enveloped the six zones of the country. YCE commended what it described as collaborative efforts of South West governors in checkmating the security challenges in the zone.

“We appeal to the southwest governors to vigorously pursue the economic integration agenda of the zone by adequately funding and equipping the DAWN organization for the task ahead.” While charging the president and that National Assembly to do the needful by initiating the process of building the Nigerian nation without delay, they maintained that Nigeria must stop living a lie but to live the reality that “we are different people who must learn to manage effectively our differences”.


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