In a recent series of viral videos, the President of the Young Yorubas for Freedom, Adeyinka Grandson, made a controversial call for organised violence in the pursuit of ‘Oduduwa Republic.’
He shares his motivation with TOBI AWORINDE
Who is Adeyinka Grandson?
I had two grandfathers. The first was an Akoko-Yoruba, while the other was a Remo-Yoruba. I likewise had two grandmothers. The foremost was an Ondo-Yoruba and the other an Ijebu-Yoruba. These four grandparents, together produced my parents. I, consequently, have Yoruba bloods from Akoko, Remo, Ondo, and Ijebu respectively.
Where Yoruba breaks away from Nigeria as an autonomous and sovereign nation, the so-called imperialists would find it extremely difficult to use Egba-Yoruba against Ondo-Yoruba. However, as long as Nigeria remains a going concern, the imperialists will always use the Hausa/Fulani to hold the Yoruba nation and her people down, politically, economically, and socially. If our children must compete with their contemporaries from Japan, China, Britain and the United States, who are all monocultural countries, according to the (United States’) Central Intelligence Agency World Factbook, Yorubaland must break away from Nigeria.
Adeyinka Grandson is, first and last, a Yoruba citizen and a prince of Oka-Akoko (Ondo State).
What inspired you to make a video calling for organised violence or ‘Oduduwa Republic’?
We all know that Nigeria had its independence from the British colonial government in 1960. What many Yoruba do not recognise is that, prior to Nigeria’s independence in 1960, the Yoruba people had rejected the political leadership of Britain over the Yoruba country as far back as 1951 in what was known then as self-rule.
Immediately the Yoruba attained self-rule in 1952, the political boundaries of the country were separated into the following: regional, provincial, divisional, district and native authorities. The regional government was called the Western Region of Nigeria. The Region had the following provinces: Oyo Province, Ibadan Province, Abeokuta Province, Lagos Colony (excluding Victoria Island), Ijebu Province, Oyo-Ife Province, Ondo Province, Benin Province, as well as Ilorin and Kabba Province.
When Awolowo led the Action Group to victory in the Yoruba Western Regional elections of 1951 and was named leader of government, business and Minister of Local Government and Finance, and ultimately becoming the first premier of the region, under nine years, he provided for the Yoruba nation what the British colonial government couldn’t in 200 years. However, there is no more free education, free health care or a welfarist state in Yorubaland. The revenue generated in Yorubaland goes to Abuja to fund economic growth and development in the North — since 1966.
The following seven revenue generating agencies collect 95 per cent of the Federal Government of Nigeria incomes: the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, the Nigeria Customs Service, the Federal Inland Revenue Service, the Nigeria Ports Authority, the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas.
From all the levies paid to the Federal Government of Nigeria as revenue, the Yoruba pays 49 per cent of the total revenue accruing to the Federal Government every month, but receives about eight per cent of the monthly allocation from the same Federal Government, whereas, the North, a region that contributes less than five per cent to the total revenue of the Federal Government, receives more than 55 per cent of the monthly allocation shared by the Federal Government.
We make no pretence that if the Federal Government of Nigeria refuses to return Nigeria to true and fiscal federalism that is based on regional autonomy on or before election, the Young Yorubas for Freedom will declare for Oduduwa Republic and start a war with the use of chemical, biological, and even radiological weapons against the Federal Government of Nigeria if its President orders an attack on the sovereignty of the Yoruba people whenever we declare for Oduduwa Republic.
The days our parents were protesting with their fists in the face of armoured tanks and being killed, arrested, imprisoned and exiled by the Hausa/Fulani are over. Our generation has learned from their mistakes. It is Oduduwa Republic or organised violence.
In your video, you described the Yoruba as gullible idiots. Don’t you think such language is counterintuitive?
I have never described Yoruba as gullible idiots. Rather, I have always described the Yoruba youths as gullible. They have acquired too much education, but have always acted like stupid people. They watched on TV and turned Occupy Wall Street into Occupy Nigeria; Arab Spring into Bring Back Our Girls; Obama’s Change Campaign into Buhari’s Change rhetoric; whereas the real change is Oduduwa Republic.
The gullible Yoruba youth are oblivious of the fact that small business owners with operational base in Yorubaland have been paying corporate income tax in the Yoruba’s South-West since 1966, but 90 per cent of the tax goes to build schools, hospitals, fire stations, and roads for the people living in the northern regions, whilst 200 children in Yorubaland die each day from sanitation-related diarrhoea, when revenues collected in Yorubaland fund economic growth and development in the North.
The gullible Yoruba youths who are pro-One Nigeria can crosscheck with the Federal Ministry of Finance that 70 per cent of VAT/Sales Tax collected in Nigeria is from Lagos, Yorubaland. If we add Ogun, Oyo, Ondo, Osun, Ekiti, Kwara and Western Kogi, Akoko-Edo and Itsekiri in Delta State to Lagos State, Yorubaland contributes 85 per cent of the VAT/sales tax collected by the Federal Government of Nigeria.
The Yoruba are acting like slaves in Nigeria. The more reason Hausa/Fulani people are always desperate to ‘capture’ power to continue to lord it over the Yoruba people. If Yoruba youths can understand why they are wretched and miserable, they will take up to organised violence with chemical weapons to free their homeland from Nigeria. But because Christianity and Islam have damaged their minds and souls, they can’t think like human beings. Before I was born, the saying has always been that ‘the Yoruba are the most educated people in Nigeria.’ It is an expensive joke I have heard in my adult life.
You spoke of biological and chemical weapons to be used for reprisals if any Yoruba is attacked. What weapons are you referring to in particular?
The YYF, led by myself, stands by every word I made in the trending video for the declaration of Oduduwa Republic. We have no aim of denying our resolve to use organised violence to bring about Oduduwa Republic. We are no longer for restructuring; we want total control of our lives and properties and every noble Yoruba youth must be ready to defend our civilisation. As the most intelligent ethnic group out of black Africa, if we are attacked like stated in the declaration, the consequences will be grievously severe. We have enough respect from Yoruba citizens to protect our borders. We have the desire and the courage to preserve our civilisation with organised violence in the face of outright violence from the Hausa/Fulani and the Federal Government of Nigeria.
We urge the young Yoruba to remove and replace Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island with Fela Anikulapo Way, Victoria Island. We call on young Yoruba to remove and replace the name ‘the Nigeria Stock Exchange’ and revert it back to its original name, ‘the Lagos Stock Exchange.’ We exhort the young Yoruba to remove and replace the ‘Murtala Muhammed International Airport’ back to its original name, ‘Lagos International Airport.’ We bid on young Yoruba to go to Apapa Wharf and Tin Can Port Complex and take it over from the Hausa/Fulani and the Federal Government of Nigeria. They are Yoruba ports and waterways.
If threatened by a competing ideal, we are ready to defend our ideals to the death. We have no intention of substituting the belief in the Oduduwa Republic with the continuous slavery of Yoruba nation and her people in Nigeria. In our view, human beings are not attracted to evil; they aspire to be part of something resplendent; they need to order their lives according to some grand ideals, some difficult principles, or some arduous rules; and this is why civilisation must be understood as a search for ideals. It is not for the love of evil or even love of self that the YYF declared for Oduduwa Republic, but in the zealous pursuit of a sublime ideal that is believed to be so majestic, so magnificent and so grand that it is worthy of every sacrifice, every hardship, and every abomination.
The YYF is leading to use biological and chemical weapons to protect and safeguard the interests and welfare of the Yoruba nation and her people from the Hausa/Fulani and the Federal Government if and when they ever attacked in Yorubaland.
When was the YYF created?
In 2012, I started the movement, YYF, formerly known as the Noble Yoruba Youths, to stir the imagination of Yoruba youths and awaken their popular enthusiasm, develop their critical thinking, their ability to observe, understand and analyse problems considerably and appeal to their consciousness to support a return to the regional system of government or outright dissolution of Nigeria in favour of Oduduwa Republic.
Who are the leaders of the YYF and how is the group funded?
On August 6, I was appointed the President of YYF. During my acceptance speech as the president I brought up the issue of funding and jokingly asked, “what if we go to the banks across Yorubaland with guns and requested as a right, money to fund our course of actions, would you call me a criminal?” They all said yes. I told them that that was how the Hausa/Fulani people had been stealing the Yoruba’s wealth and resources at gunpoint, under the sham unitary presidential system since the suspension of the regional system of government in 1966. They all readily agreed. Nevertheless, we are being funded by the generosity of the NYY.
You have been compared to Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra. Do you take inspiration from him?
I take inspiration from three people: G.B. Ajayi, who was a professor emeritus and my former teacher — he edited my first book ‘Why Nigeria’s Poor?’ written in 2002; Chief Obafemi Awolowo, who was a Yoruba nationalist and the first Premier of the Yoruba Western Region from 1952 to 1959; and Sir Winston Churchill, an English politician who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1940 to 1945 and again from 1951 to 1955. In the face of organised violence from (Adolph) Hitler and Nazi Germany, he did not preach non-violence. Rather, he rallied the young men and women of his country, confronted Hitler and defeated him and Nazi Germany.
I have the greatest admiration for all those involved in project Biafra, but I do not take inspiration from Nnamdi Kanu. I began my agitation for Oduduwa Republic close to a decade ago. For most of my life, I have pursued an academic career with political interest. I established Economic Initiative to influence regional urban policy to bring about effective change for local communities, by acting as a bridge between policy-making and the community sector. In all my work, I bring together people from a wide range of backgrounds to develop ideas that will shape debate in Yorubaland and beyond and engage a broad and diverse audience worldwide.
Why are you in the UK, campaigning for organised violence in Nigeria?
On August 6, 2017, I was appointed the President of YYF. The YYF is a conservative youth organisation established in 2012 to ensure that increasing numbers of young Yoruba understand and are inspired by the idea of liberty, individual freedom, a strong Yoruba national defence, free enterprise, and self-preservation. We are affiliated to other pro-Yoruba self-determination groups in Yorubaland and one of them recently publicly declared for Oduduwa Republic. I have always wanted to live in Yorubaland and not in Nigeria. Nigeria is a sham. It pays the Hausa/Fulani, but not the Yoruba.
Are you not concerned that federal and/or international security agencies may come after you?
Again, the moment I was appointed president of the YYF on August 6 and released the trending video for the declaration of Oduduwa Republic, gullible Yoruba who are working for the interests of the Hausa/Fulani and led by horrible souls, reported me to the police in England almost immediately. The Yoruba people have no sense of self-preservation like the white in America and the English in Britain, but this is changing, believe me.