The embattled national coordinator of the Odua Peoples Congress (OPC) militia group, Gani Adams, on Monday said his effort in protecting the Yoruba nation is fruitless following verbal attacks on its personality.
Mr. Gani disclosed that the group with thousands of registered members across the country has taken tactical approaches to issues related to insecurity in Nigerian society, especially in the Yoruba region of the country.
He spoke at a Democracy Day lecture titled "Herdsmen-Farmers Clash: Implications For Inter-Ethnic Relations, Nigeria Concept" organized by the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) held in Akure, the Ondo State capital.
The OPC coordinator averred that the members of the group formed in 1994 for the purpose of protecting the sovereignty of the Yoruba nation are now being treated poorly by antagonists opposed to its ideology.
Mr. Gani also threw verbal missiles to certain sociopolitical leaders in the county who refer to the OPC as an arm of the dreaded militant group ravaging the creek of the Niger Delta region.
"I can't continue to fight for the Yorubas. It is only when there is a threat that they remember the group of the Odua Peoples Congress.
"Many of you have been tagging and referring to the members of the organization, the Odua Peoples Congress, as a militant group," he added.
Mr. Gani, who bluntly delivered a fifteen-minute lecture on the occasional clashes between the herdsmen and farmers, stated that the former poses a serious threat to the peace and security of Nigeria.
He categorized the wanton destruction caused by the herdsmen as economic and political sabotage, adding that the nomadic herdsmen are Boko Haram members masquerading in Fulani attire.
While noting that the activity of the Fulani herdsmen is threatening the peaceful coexistence of the country and food security, the OPC leader said that Nigerian communities might resort to self-help if the government fails to provide them with protection.
"Herdsmen attacks on farmers are threatening Nigerians’ co-existence and food security, I must confess.
"Let me state it clearly that communities in the country may resort self-help if the government fails to provide security and do something urgent about this," he said.
Mr. Gani added that the mission of the herdsmen is to disintegrate the country and cripple the economic base of the Yoruba nation through their constant destruction of farmlands and cash crops caused by their cattle.
The OPC coordinator also maintained that Nigeria as a country might not progress if the unwholesome activities of the Fulani nomadic herdsmen are not quickly addressed as stipulated in the 2014 National Conference report.
He later agitated for a true federalism that would see the restructuring of the country's resource control and a viable economic base that would help each region develop on its own.