Hours to the Presidential election, the authentic Pan Yoruba socio political group led by its National leader, Chief Reuben Fasoranti on Wednesday publicly endorsed the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar as the Yoruba race candidate for the Saturday polls.
Addressing a special Town Hall meeting on moving Nigeria Forward” held at Jogor Centre Ibadan, Chief Reuben Fasoranti asked Yoruba sons and daughters across Nigeria to vote for Alhaji Atiku Abubakar on Saturday contrary to an earlier endorsement of President Muhammadu Buhari by another faction of Afenifere Ibadan recently
According to the Afenifere leader, the endorsement of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar followed his decision to implement the much clamoured for restructuring of Nigeria which Afenifere and the entire Southwest had been agitated for long .
He stressed that with the PDP Presidential candidate agreeing to implement the restructuring of Nigeria, there is the need for Afenifere as the voice of the Yoruba race to come out and give the way for the Yoruba race to follow come this Saturday, hence the Town hall meeting to show the people of the South West region the need for them to vote for Atiku Abubakar because he had promised to implement restructuring proposal to the letter.
“We are here to support the candidate that will implement to the letter, the restructuring of Nigeria as moved in the Ibadan declaration in 2017. Nigeria, we want someone that will restructure Nigeria. We want Nigeria that is restructured. The structure that we want is the one that will not be manipulated. That is not the kind of restructuring that we want. That is what Yoruba stand for. We are endorsing Atiku Abubakar of PDP”, he said.
A Chieftain of Afenifere Senator Femi Okurounmu said the authentic Afenifere settled for Alhaji Atiku Abubakar after considering the two prominent Presidential candidates in the race namely President Muhammadu Buhari and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and that having investigated the candidates contesting the presidential election, it was discovered that Alhaji ” Atiku Abubakar is the best man to do the job especially with its commitment to implement the restructuring of Nigeria”.
“This gathering is to let the Yoruba’s speak in one voice. This is to tell us that this is where Yoruba is going. We are going to support Atiku Abubakar. We have seen that there are two major contenders, out of the over 70 candidates, but, Atiku Abubakar is the one we will vote for. It is Atiku that can tackle the herdsmen and Book Haram. Buhari cannot fight them.
Former Secretary to the Federal Government and Chieftain of Afenifere Chief Olu Falae declared that Afenifere is not supporting Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, despite being a Yoruba man, and the the Vice President because his ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) do not believe in restructuring, which the Yoruba apex group has been agitating for over the years.
“Politics is not about biological relationship, but ideological inclination. Professor Osinbajo, our son has spent four years, and he is saying that what we need is good governance and not restructuring. We want restructuring, but Osinbajo does not believe in restructuring, and that is why we are not supporting his political party.Alhaji Atiku promised us that he will restructure Nigeria. Initially, we did not believe him because he is a Fulani man, but after holding meetings with him, we were convinced that he is sincere about his promise to restructure Nigeria”, he said
Chief Falae cautioned that Nigerians will revolt if the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) does not allow people’s votes to count during Saturday’s Presidential election.
In his remarks, another Afenifere leader, Chief Ayo Adebanjo emphasized that the Chief Reuben Fasoranti group was the authentic Afenifere with its members spread across major political parties in the country contrary to insinuation that it has turned to an align of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).saying, it was glaring that with the present situation in the country, only Alhaji Atiku Abubakar remains the best candidate for Nigeria to move forward as well as to properly tackle the security, economy and other socio political challenges facing the country.
“Buhari, APC cannot take us to the promised land. It is the PDP that can do that. We are not PDP. Our members are from different political parties, but we are endorsing the PDP candidate because of the resolve to implement restructuring agenda. On Saturday, vote Atiku, on Saturday, vote Atiku”.
In the communique issued at the end of the Town hall meeting read to newsmen by Honourable Babatunde Oduyoye, the authentic Afenifere stated that the decision to endorse Atiku’s candidacy was because of his promise to restructure Nigeria.
Part of the communiqué reads: “Afenifere has been advocating for restructuring for some time. Our position and the type of restructuring we have in mind were encapsulated in the document we made public at the submit we held in Ibadan in July, 2017.
” We have watched and listened to various candidates vying for the position of president in the election to be held on Saturday, February 16, 2019. We realize that only the Presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar that has irrevocably committed himself to restructure the country on becoming the President of the country.
“We take note of the fact that Alhaji Abubakar is not a new convert to the principle of restructuring. He has been at the forefront of campaign for restructuring for upward of eight years. In view of the foregoing, Afenifere hereby endorses the Waziri Adamawa, Alhaji Abubakar as the candidate all Yoruba people should vote for at Saturday election”.
The town hall meeting was attended by Afenifere leaders, including; Chief Reuben Fasoranti, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, Chief Olu Falae, Senator Femi Okuronmu, Prince Debo Gbadebo, and Chief Mrs. Bola Doherty.