DR. REUBEN ABATI
Friday April 2, 2021
Dear Dr. Reuben Abati,
RE: YORUBA SELF DETERMINATION AND TREASONABLE FELONY
Not being in high mood for pleasantries, please permit me the latitude to abbreviate greetings under the usual Nigerian euphemism: ”All protocols observed.”
I saw a shocking video of your recent morning show on ‘ARISE NEWS.’ In that panel discussion, the current agitation for Yoruba self-determination was at issue. You claimed, with such menacing passion that Nigeria has been particularly kind to the Yoruba more than any other race. You labeled the peaceful and legitimate agitation of a people for self-determination as a crime and called the vocal few representing popular agitation as people committing ‘Treasonable Felony.’
I react to this provocation, one, to correct the use of the word kindness and substitute wickedness of Nigeria to the Yoruba. Two, to discourage other intellectual mercenaries before they are recruited to spread toxic propaganda that can fracture our current unity. Three, to warn Yoruba elites that this ‘treasonable felony’ idea you float on air may be one message passed through you to soften the ground for nebulous action against Professor Banji Akintoye, Chief Sunday Igboho and their associates. My fear is that this may be a prelude to actions aimed at arresting, incarcerating, harming and God forbid, killing some of these agitators.
I do not intend to embark on deep character observations, but I believe it is in order, dear Dr. Abati, to find out where your case file with EFCC stands at this time. For, one recalls, from the Sahara Reporters story of October 24, 2016 that you were arrested for money laundering to the tune of N50 million naira in October 22, 2016 or thereabouts. I wonder if you have settled, and how, for, we observe that you have not been harassed since your release. I hope you are not being squeezed to do the bidding of Government as they prepare to confront the Yoruba agitators using some of our people.
In explaining your conduct to the people, I believe these derivatives would be close to accurate as I have interpreted the sense in my own words. You said something to the effect that:
Nigeria has been especially kind to the Yoruba than most other groups within the union and therefore have absolutely no cause to complain but the Yoruba insist that Nigeria has viciously degraded their progress, dented the future of their generations and consigned the career of their citizens to hopelessness. You premised this false ‘kindness’ narrative under the following:
· The Yoruba control the economy. An absolute falsehood. The control of the Nigerian economy is in the offices of Alhaji Aliko Dangote and Abdulsamad Rabiu, both Hausa Fulani. And this happened recently under the patronage of your Egba kinsman, General Obasanjo, continued relentlessly under this regime through waivers, import licenses and tax holidays to these two almost exclusively. And having been in Government, obviously, you know why.
· The gradual decomposition of the position of the Yoruba in the Nigerian economy has been deliberate and consistent particularly under Generals Abacha, Obasanjo and Buhari. Name one Bank controlled by the Yoruba today. How about the oil and Gas and other major sectors of the economy? The Industrial and financial sectors typical of Yoruba wizardry have since been sabotaged through various Government efforts at emasculation. Your assertion is absolutely false and you know it.
· The Yoruba has produced Presidents twice, and currently own the Vice president. Correction please, the North has produced three Presidents of their choice from Yoruba proxies guaranteed to serve and preserve their interest and privileges. General Obasanjo twice, Ernest Shonekan and you are right, the current redundant member of Government, Vice President Yemi Oshibajo who does not know how to work for them, and therefore is as powerful in that regime as I am in Lagos State.
· You refer to the election of MKO Abiola. But forgot or failed to remember that Abiola belonged absolutely to them until they found him unsuitable to the cause they wanted to chart. MKO Abiola was their bulldog used to harass, torment and bite Chief Awolowo into impotence. Is it not curious, dear Dr. Abati, that most of these minions and slave drivers of their people appear, like you to be Egba elites who care little for the poor people of Egbaland and even less for the Yoruba tribe? Chief Justice Adetokunbo Ademola, Egba Prince sealed the fate of Awolowo and helped Ahmadu Bello consign him to prison, Obasanjo frustrated the ambition of Obafemi Awolowo and thus denied the people of Nigeria exemplary leadership. True to type, Shonekan did same to MKO Abiola and denied us of knowing how things would have been. And here you go again, helping them to plot the downfall of this legitimate agitation. Why so?
· You even said that the Yoruba have been well served Dr., I have not been served at all. I know you have?
· Yet there is a dangerous dimension to your words. The shout out to the Fulani government that proponents of self-determination have committed the crime of ‘Treasonable Felony’ is terrifying. It is disturbing because it would appear to many to be designed by those who want to arrest and incarcerate the likes of Professor Banji Akintoye and Sunday Igboho in order that they can intimidate the rest of us and stop the tide of independence. By the way, while you call for the Government to charge these patriots with felony, what call are you now suggesting for Miyetti Allah, their killer herdsmen and the leaders who fuel and fund them? How about the Northern group, Fulani Nationality Movement, FUNAM, which owned up to attacking with intent to kill a serving Governor, Ortom of Benue State?
It would appear that plans are in place to arrest and charge Professor Akintoye and Sunday Igboho while using Yoruba professional press legionnaires to test the waters and make it appear that a crime has been committed. It is a well appreciated fact that the Fulani are experts at baiting a minion monkey with a ripe banana in order to catch the head monkey.
It is important that you either eat up your words and apologise, to show the public you are not party to a conspiracy or remain silent and pray that no harm comes to Yoruba leaders of this movement.
DR. REUBEN ABATI