Elder statesman and leader of Afenifere, Pa Ayo Adebanjo, has said that at the age of 94, he’s already gone and only expecting his funeral.
Adebanjo who turned 94 on Sunday, April 10, made the declaration in an interview on the state of the nation to mark the birthday anniversary.
Speaking on the state of the nation, Adebanjo said his greatest regret about Nigeria is that he is going to leave behind a country led by the blind and with blind followers.
“I have nothing to worry except Nigeria that I am going to die in this position that blind people are leading the country, the followers are equally blind,” he said. “Everybody wants material gain. It is unfortunate and that is what makes me sad.”
Asked whether he was expecting a revolution in the country given its persisting challenges, Adebanjo who decried the failed leadership in the country and the refusal to restructure the country, answered in the affirmative.
He noted, however, that he has tried his best and would leave the issues for the younger generation, as according to him, he’s already gone and expecting his funeral.
“Of course. Mind you, I have told people, freedom is never granted, it is won. It is the people who are suffering that will show by their action, the way people like Sunday Igboho are reacting, the way people like Nnamdi Kanu are reacting and more will react. They will be forced to go to the streets and call for a change,” he said.
“You say you don’t want the country to break and you want to stop a revolution, make the constitution acceptable to everybody.
“Let us sit down, if you are not going to accept the one we had at independence, you are not going to accept the 2014 National Conference report or the el-Rufai report, then, let us sit down and talk but you said know; you want to impose the constitution brought by the army that is in favour of a section of the country that makes the ruler a dictator, which they are now doing. Who will accept that and you say you want peace.
“You are just playing to the gallery; I have said it that the problem of the country is obvious, a lay man can solve it.
“They introduced ethnicity and religion, all because they want to stay in power and some people, who eat the crumbs from the table, support them but once the crumbs are not there, they revolt. That is what is happening in the APC when they rigged the national chairman into office. Have you heard of consensus democracy? It is a shame.
“It is left for you younger generation and as I said, I am already gone and I am expecting my funeral.
“Will I say that God has not been kind enough to me? I am 94. Where are my other colleagues? I am worried about those I am going to leave behind. In the First Republic, you will promise your son and daughter that if he or she makes a first class, you will buy a car for them. Can the father buy a bicycle for himself now?” Adebanjo queried.
Speaking on the upcoming 2023 general election, he said the polls will be an exercise in futility without restructuring.
“It is an exercise in futility. I have said it before. The 2023 elections, without restructuring, is an exercise in futility and I stand by it,” he said.
On the Kaduna-Abuja train attack and the threat by Governor Nasir el-Rufai that North West governors would hire mercenaries to tackle insecurity in their region if the Federal Government fails to curb the menace, he said, “That is not the first time; it is unfortunate that they are all living in denial.I have said it before that Buhari has failed in everything he promised us and he has failed in the major thing he should do for the country- to protect lives and property. What has he done to stop insecurity? Every day when they kill, he would say “I give marching orders”. How many marching orders has he given?
“Since when has the governor of Borno State told us Boko Harm has taken so many local governments in his state? Have you heard that they have recovered those local governments?
“Since when has the government of Niger State told us that Boko Haram territories are increasing?You see, they are all living in denial. They know the solution to the problems of the country. I take you up again. You mentioned el-Rufai. The man said that the attack on the train could have been avoided and he gave the details that the DSS and security agencies know where the terrorists are, they had discussions with them. Has the government responded to them? Is that the first time?
“A former general once said that he has given the list of those in charge of Boko Haram to Buhari since 2018 and that some of them are in the cabinet of Buhari, some are in the Senate. Has the government refuted that statement?
“And if you remember, General Theophilus Danjuma once said that the Army is in collusion, has the government refuted that? What has the government said or done to deny or refute all these allegations?”