Allegation of the Federal government plans to arrest the former President Olusegun Obasanjo and other unnamed leaders in the region has prompted some leaders of South-West to meet in Lagos on Saturday to forge a common front.
Swansylinks also gathered from SUNDAY PUNCH that a leader of the Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, who convened the meeting, invited key figures in the zone to the meeting which held at his Lekki home in Lagos, impressing on them the need to mend fences for the “battle” ahead.
Obasanjo and his entourage arrived at Adebanjo’s house at 10.40am for the meeting which held behind closed doors.
Swansylinks also got from SUNDAY PUNCH that sources at the meeting, who described it as an “essentially fence mending” one, which recognised that “ancient animosity among Yoruba leaders must give way for them to see clearly” in forging progress for the region and the country in general.
One of sources said, “Obasanjo was full of life at the meeting. He cracked jokes, talked seriously and made the meeting lively.”
It was gathered that the meeting was full of “frank engagements” as the attendees brainstormed on the way forward for the Yoruba race.
Another source at the meeting said that the meeting was convened by the Afenifere’s chieftain not just to mend fences among leaders in the South-West but to plan against any plot of arrest on some leaders in the zone.
The source, an insider in the planning of the meeting, said, “The meeting was called by Papa Adebanjo. That’s why you could see people of diverse callings at the meeting; people you wouldn’t ordinarily see in the same place together.
“You are familiar with the happenings in the country lately and the barrage of attacks on the former President. If that one (Obasanjo) is taken out of the way, and Asiwaju (Bola Tinubu) is rendered irrelevant, anyone can overrun the region and perpetrate what he or she wants.
“Essentially, it is to mend fences among the leaders and ensure that the region comes up with a common front on issues that affect us. It offered otherwise ‘feuding’ parties the opportunity to iron out their differences.”
Obasanjo didn’t speak with journalists after the meeting, preferring to sit in his car while a few of the attendees spoke with newsmen.
Speaking briefly with journalists, Adebanjo said the gathering was nothing more than the fact that Nigeria must move forward.
He said, “All attempts to establish dictatorial tendencies in the country must be opposed. There must be unity to destroy mediocrity and dictatorship.
“What is important is that we have our common goal. We don’t have a candidate yet; not yet. We must agree first and any differences among us must be settled. If you are not united, you can’t fight a battle. The Yoruba man must put on his thinking cap.”