May 25, 2012 The Edo state government and people were yesterday urged to withdraw from the BRACED states. making the call in a release on Friday afternoon, the Apapo Oodua Koya (AOKOYA) the Yoruba self determination group said the call was necessary in order not to distort the history and heritage of the Benin Empire. "We urge the Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiohmole and the great people of Edo state to withdraw their membership of the BRACED states and join the South West, which historically is closer with the people of Edo State." The group also called on Kwara and Kogi states to withdraw, henceforth their membership of the 19 Northern states. The group said that nothing demonstrated the disdain the remaining Niger-Delta states view Edo state than the fact that non of the PDP state governors offered any condolence eventhough Oshiomhole was set up to be killed in a road accident, two days after the BRACED meeting and also that his principal secretary, Mr Olaitan Oyerinde was assassinated. "All we got from the BRACED states was sealed lips, non of them offered any condolence, raising suspicion of cold complicity and a naked clash of civilisation.
In the statement signed by Dr Ayeluwa Sokunbi, the Officer in charge of Ethnic Relations, the group said in the proposed restructuring of Nigeria, the people of Edo and Delta will be at a great disadvantage is they allow themselves to be grouped with the BRACED states. "We call on Kwara and Kogi to withdraw from the 19 Northern states while the Middle-Belt should assert its dignity and establish its frontiers by creating a bloc that reflects its religion, culture and values which are totally different from the core North.
The statement read "We are convinced that the Edo and Delta people have every reason to sustain the agelong relationship between the Yoruba people and Edo. We have common ancestry, our language is similar and we share the same cultural traits. Edo was carved out of the South West by the Northern caliphate while Delta, Kwara and Kogi States were equally taken off the South West region by the despotic anti-Yoruba military authorities of Generals Ibrahim Babangida and Sanni Abacha, the term Niger-Delta was thus a recent creation fueled by the balkanisation of the South West. "We are certain that the egalitarian culture and liberal democratic culture of the Yoruba people runs from Lagos to Jebba, Lokoja to Edo and Itsekiri part of Delta state."
We the Yoruba are not imperialistic, we do not seek to subjugate the Edo and Delta people under the Yoruba nation, but we strongly believe that the two nationalities, the two great primordial empires share historical cords that must nut be allowed to be broken by the bestial Nigerian hegemonist state. The group said it will pursue "this demand with full vigour and energy to ensure that the Yoruba natural boundaries are not hijacked by the Northern caliphate and their agents.