The leading youth organisation in the Oyo North area of Oyo State, Saki Youth Organisation, has berated the commendation made by the former president of Nigeria, Olusegun Obasanjo, for ridiculously commanding the state’s monarch to stand up and greet him in an aggressive manner during the commissioning of the Iseyin Campus of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology last week.
Recall that the ex-military and civilian president of the country made the call in an unusual manner that has generated different reactions across the country.
The youth organisation, through her president, Com. Kazeem Oladejo, condemned the behaviour and described it as an overzealous use of power and a lack of respect for traditional authority from a self-proclaimed respecter of Yoruba culture.
The statement reads: “The actions of former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo at the opening of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Iseyin Campus, on Friday, September 15th, 2023, have been condemned and described as inappropriate tests of power and authority by the ex-president by the Saki Youth Organization. His behaviour during the event, specifically instructing Oyo state monarchs present to stand up in an aggressive manner, has been deemed highly inappropriate and disrespectful to the traditional institutions of Nigeria.”
“In a shocking display of disregard for the dignity and decorum associated with traditional institutions, Mr. Obasanjo’s actions have left a stain on the solemnity of the occasion and have been widely criticized by leaders, scholars, and the public alike.”
“Traditional institutions in Nigeria play a pivotal role in preserving the cultural heritage and values of various ethnic groups, and they are deeply revered by the people. Any actions that undermine their sanctity or bring them into disrepute are met with strong disapproval.”
“Mr. Obasanjo’s conduct, which included demanding obeisance from the monarchs in an aggressive manner, has been described as an affront to the rich tapestry of Nigerian traditions and a serious breach of the respect traditionally accorded to traditional rulers. It is essential to emphasise that respect for traditional institutions is not only a matter of courtesy but also a fundamental part of the fabric of Nigerian society.”
In a rebuttal manner, the organisation demanded an unreserved apology from Obasanjo, described his activities as corrupting to the coming generation of Yoruba leaders, and enjoined him to serve as a promoter of the Omoluabi value of Yoruba, which his recent actions lack.
“We, the Saki Youth Organisation and stakeholders, call upon Mr. Olusegun Obasanjo to publicly apologise for his actions at the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Iseyin Campus opening ceremony and to demonstrate his commitment to upholding the cherished values and traditions of our nation.”
“We also urge leaders, both past and present, to exhibit the highest standards of respect and decorum when attending public events, especially those that involve traditional institutions. Nigeria’s unity and harmony are strengthened when we uphold the dignity of our diverse cultural heritage.”