…promises to douse tension in Southwest
By Chesa Chesa
Foremost Yoruba monarch and Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, has advised Nigerians to vote whoever they desire to be their president in the forthcoming presidential election as no leader is bigger than the nation.
He spoke to State House correspondents in Abuja after he led some traditional rulers from the Southwest on a visit to President Muhammadu Buhari at at the Aso Rock Villa on Friday.
Oba Ogunwusi explained though that the visit was not political but to discuss development issues as they concern the Southwest and Nigeria, particularly to make more demand on behalf of their subjects for developmental projects.
He said the Southwest traditional rulers have resolved to douse tension in the region towards ensuring peaceful elections.
According to him: “Election is so close by and obviously tension will build. What is critical is for us to know that Nigeria is greater than all of us. No amount of money they will promise the youths to disrupt and to destabilise the country, they should know they are making history for themselves.
“They will come and they will go but Nigeria will remain. We traditional rulers who are very fortunate to still be alive, we have experienced many presidents, many governors. A president cannot use more than eight years, that is in the constitution of Nigeria, so Nigeria is greater than the president whose maximum tenure is eight years.
“So, our message to everyone in Nigeria is that please, especially Nigerian youths, go and vote for whoever you want to vote for. Mr. President even said it by himself, it is not a do or die. Whatever you want t to use your power of your thumb for, go ahead and do it.
“We are not here for politics. We are father to all, very close to our people, the only politics we understand is politics of development. We are here to talk about development for our people in all the states of the south western Nigeria.
We here to point out the good things Mr. President has been doing especially the cordial relationship with the Vice President who is from the south western part of the country.
“We are here to further request from Mr. President good things that we want for our various states. When you are doing good you will first of all appreciate the good things before asking for more.
“What is critical for us here is to champion development for our people. We spoke about the inclusion of youths in the current government and also women inclusion. In terms of demography of votes pattern, we know that everything rest on the shoulders of Nigerian youths, we want to see them in this cabinet.”
Oba Ogunwusi also pointed out that the Southwest accommodates everyone in the country, that is the only zone that you can call a typical Nigeria because it is a blend of everybody, all the tribes of this nation you will find them in the south western Nigeria.
“So as result, we play pivotal role in anything that has to do with decision making in Nigeria, a zone we are even the second largest in terms of voting demography and numbers. So critically south Western Nigeria plays a very vital role and we as traditional rulers we are the ones to douse the tension. We don’t pray for any tension but we are ready, we have all decided to work together to douse any tension. Whoever that comes is the president of Nigeria.”
Asked how the president responded to the visit and demands Ooni said “the president gave a very good speech, he recognized the pivotal role south western Nigeria has been playing and will continue to play. So fingers crossed what is critical is that let people go out and vote whoever they want to vote for in Nigeria”.