Senator Femi Okunrounmu, a leader of the pan-Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, has stated that Yoruba people already regret voting for President Muhammadu Buhari.
Okunrounmu, who was the chairman of the defunct Presidential Advisory Committee on National Conference, had supported the immediate past president, Goodluck Jonathan, for a second term and asked the Yoruba to vote for him. However, Buhari received over two million votes from the south-west in the last election and defeated Jonathan in the presidential electiom.
Speaking with The Punch correspondent on Saturday, August 29, Okunrounmu noted that his predictions about the Buhari-led administration were already coming true.
According to the group’s leader, the president’s recent appointments showed that the North would dominate Nigeria in all spheres.
“As a Yoruba man, I am very uncomfortable with this (appointments). Buhari had a reputation for ethnic bias and when we said it during the election, they said we were lying.
“The change the APC was talking about meant two different things. The APC in the North saw change as an opportunity to return power to the region while those in the South-West were looking for genuine social change. At the end, the North just used the South-West to get into Aso Rock and now we are regretting it,” he said.
Although Femi Adesina, the president’s spokesperson, assured Nigerians that Buhari would balance the lopsided appointments very soon, Okunrounmu noted that all the important appointments had already been made.
In his opinion, no other appointment could be more powerful than the secretary to the government of the federation.
“Look at the power configuration in Nigeria today; there are three arms of government: The executive, the legislature and the judiciary. The executive is headed by Buhari who is a northerner; the two arms of the legislature which are the Senate and the House of Representatives, are headed by northerners: Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara, respectively.
“The Chief Justice, Mahmoud Mohammed, who heads the judiciary, is also a northerner. So, the entire government is completely in the hands of northerners,” he noted.
According to the Afenifere leader, the fact that a Yoruba man is the vice-president of the country meant nothing as there was no constitutional role for him.
Okunrounmu called on Buhari to implement the report of the conference, by saying:
“Clearly, his body language and the body language of all his lieutenants show that they are not keen on implementing the resolutions of the conference. However, in spite of that, those of us who believe it is the panacea to the problems of this nation shall not stop putting pressure on the President and all other organs of government to let them see that this is the way forward.”
A week ago, the Yoruba group and Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo state called on Buhari to remove Amina Bala Zakari, the acting chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Mimiko noted that the the INEC boss had a close relationship with the president, and it was not going to be healthy for Nigeria’s democracy.