Sunday, July 4, 2021 11:57 pm
The Olowu of Owu-Kuta in Osun, Oba Adekunle Makama, has said those engaged in separatist agitation are waging war against the Nigerian state.
The traditional ruler who condemned secessionist calls in Nigeria, describing it as unpatriotic said this while fielding questions from journalists in his palace on Sunday.
He said as a royal father, he would never support the idea and call for separation or secession of any part of the country.
The Oba, who also doubles as Chairman, Council of Owu Obas and Chiefs, however, said he was in support of restructuring through devolution of power.
“The agitation for secession by some separatists and unpatriotic Nigerians is uncalled for. I am not in support of it.
“I have never been part of it and nobody can force me as a traditional ruler to support such because no one can shave another person’s head in his absence.
“Even at the council of obas’ meeting, nobody ever discussed secession. What we discussed was restructuring, because if you restructure, power will be devolved,” he said.
The traditional ruler advised the agitators to dialogue with government, saying that their calls and actions would not be tolerated by any serious government.
“No serious government will like to see the country in turmoil; the separatist agitation is like waging war against the state.
“Nobody dare face the federal might and succeed. Nigeria cannot afford to face another civil war.
“The banditry and Boko Haram insurgency that we have at hand are more than enough. So I will advise the agitators to dialogue with the federal government,” he said.
Speaking on the issue of insecurity, Makama said that the federal government should ensure the survival of local governments and the traditional institution so that they could detect and curb crimes at the grassroots.
“If local governments are well-organised and allowed to survive, the security challenges will be solved to a large extent.
“As traditional rulers, we don’t have constitutional roles, even though we are principal stakeholders. Since the advent of democracy, no administration has ever remembered traditional rulers.
“For the security situation to improve, lots of variables need to change. Traditional rulers are not well taken care of; some cannot even afford to change clothes in a month because they earn less than N25,000.
“As stakeholders in the security architecture, we, traditional rulers, need to be catered for, while our roles should also be fashioned into the constitution,” he said.