Pan-Yoruba socio-political association, Afenifere, has condemned the criticism of freedom fighters in some quarters noting that there will not have been agitations for secession in the first place if Nigeria is good.
Some groups and persons have condemned the agitations for secession over the past few months in the country.
An Islamic cleric, Sheikh Ahmad Gumi, had earlier described those agitating for Biafra and Oduduwa republics as miscreants akin to the Boko Haram sect terrorising the country.
He claimed that Nigerians are committed to having a united country, noting that the opinions of a few people championing the division of the country should not be taken seriously.
“Look, let’s forget these useless youths. They’re no more different from these herdsmen. These people agitating for Oduduwa, Bifafra or Arewa are all the same group of people with Boko Haram,” he had said.
Similarly, a group known as Core Incorporation, had also advised Nigerians to be wary of those posing as ethnic saviours to fight against banditry, killings and kidnappings across the country.
The group said Nigerians should learn from the emergence of the Oodua Peoples Congress and Niger Delta militants, which were supposedly meant to save their people from problems but allegedly became part of the problem.
But speaking with SaharaReporters on Monday, Afenifere’s National Publicity Secretary, Yinka Odumakin, said the emergence of such agitators for secession or freedom fighters had become necessary because the country was no longer working.
According to him, there could be excesses but rather than condemn the freedom fighters, a better approach should be suggested to them.
He said, “The person that says they are dancing in heaven is not a liar and the person that says they are drumming too is not a liar because wherever there is dancing, there must be drumming. There could be some excesses here and there with some of the groups that are fighting for self-determination but that does not mean we should abandon the reason why they are agitating for self-determination.
“If Nigeria is okay, if everything is in order, if there is no Fulani domination, if Nigeria is not being run as if it belongs to a group of people to the detriment of the rest of us, nobody will even listen to anybody talking about nationalism at this point in time.
“We should not give succour to those who are ruling Nigeria for their personal gain and condemn only those who are fighting back. If there are areas they think they should improve in their fight, they should tell them but there is no point in saying there is no reason for fighting back, there is a reason.”