OYO State Governor, Seyi Makinde, has expressed his readiness to work for the unity and integration of Yoruba people across the globe.
The governor, who stated this while receiving a delegation of traditional rulers from Benin Republic led by the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi III, added that he was keen on working for the enrichment of the Yoruba culture and economic expansion of the ethnic group.
He maintained that the Yoruba race must remain united if they hope to achieve the much-desired growth in Yoruba land.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, indicated that the governor, declared readiness to work for the unity of the Yoruba people.
According to Governor Makinde,” if the Yoruba could form a stronger bond of brotherhood, even across national boundaries, it would assist in addressing security challenges currently militating against the country, through sharing of coordinated intelligence”.
He added that there would not have been a better time for Yoruba across borders to collaborate than now, saying that the rate of insecurity in the country meant that there should be intelligence sharing among neighbouring countries.
The governor equally appreciated the effort of the Alaafin of Oyo for being in the vanguard of fostering cordiality and unity of purpose among the Yoruba, adding that his fatherly role has become admirable to all and sundry.
He said: “When Prof Ijaola said Baba Alaafin is history-personified, i couldn’t agree less to that fact. Baba knows our history and he has never misinformed us. Whoever wants to hear the truth about the history of Yoruba, Nigeria, and some significant events that have happened in the world, you only need to visit the Alaafin of Oyo’s palace and you will be fed with details of any information you require.
“So, we that are Oduduwa descendants, Yoruba, irrespective of where we belong to, we need to ensure that we enrich our culture, even across the divides.
“We must also ensure we uphold whatever that can enhance the economic activities among us to thrive. Under my watch in Oyo State, I can assure us all that it will be done.
“If you get to all the borders as described by Prof Ijaola, we are supposed to have gone far on the issue of integration. The Okerete Market in Saki is supposed to be a border market that will serve almost everyone along the West African corridors. There are opportunities.”
Speaking earlier, the Alaafin of Oyo equally emphasised that the traditional institution would not relent in its role of assisting the government to guarantee security of lives and properties within their domains.
In his remark, Emeritus Prof Anthony Ijaola recounted the historical antecedence of brotherhood among Yorubas from other countries, explaining that harmony should continually be sustained.