By Dayo Johnson
AKURE—NOBEL Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, yesterday, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a state of emergency as a way to addressing the state of insecurity in the country.
Soyinka pointedly described insecurity generally in the country as calamitous.
He said this in Akure while speaking with newsmen at the Fagunwa Study Group 2nd International Conference with the theme: Wole Soyinka, D O Fagunwa and the Yoruba Artistic Heritage.
He decried the killings, kidnapping and all manner of criminality that had taken the front burner in the country.
He said: “As regards the insecurity in the Southwest, there is an emergency.
“There should be a declaration of security emergency throughout the land and measures taken accordingly.
“There are many directions of security lapses, you know it here especially in Ondo State, it is a calamity throughout the nation. There is an emergency.”
Also expressing worry on the state of the nation and the security challenges, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu said: “Today murder, be it in form of progrom, carnage or infanticide or ethnic cleansing, sectarian occupation, is poking realities into our eyes.”
He said: “But we can rise and we are going to rise out of the rubble. I believe meetings and chat opportunities like these, apart from being a big canvas for cultural studies, is also an opportunity to deepen critical thinking, evolve a knowledge-based strategic problem-solving skills and accentuate a clear direction for human development.
“We cannot do less because our challenges are enormous, the grounds are slippery and the clock ticks by each second. We believe in your gathering and our hope rests in the applications of your conclusions to the process of education and intellectual armament of our people.
“A nation without a perfect understanding of its nationhood is a rudderless ship that is bound to capsize.
“This is the reason successful nations’ intellectuals continue to embark on archaeological excursions into cultures and traditions to distill the society and bring out its best at all times.
“For all that we know, humanity is passing through some of its trying periods. Globally, the definition of peace, progress, liberty and prosperity is interrogating the best of our civilisation today.
“From the leadership crisis which torments the sanest of public organisations to the fearful response of a traumatised followership, the narrative is clear: we must check and recheck the path on which we tread.
“I believe our own experience as a nation has proven to be an atlas of ideas; a body of knowledge that can only improve upon itself when its contradictions are processed and interrogated.”
Akeredolu, however, warned that ethnicism, tribalism, corruption, political and economic ownership of the nation has slow down the country’s pace of self-realisation.
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The governor said: “However, my concern is that this need not be. It shouldn’t be, because the key issues of solutions are clear and are before our own very eyes. In our quest as a nation, we allow unreasonable contestations on ethnicism, tribalism, corruption, political and economic ownership of the nation to slow down our pace of self-realisation.”
“In Africa, the challenge has moved largely from the legitimacy of governance institutions to its responsiveness to the need for a coordinated plan for Cultural Integration, Economic Development and general Human Capital Development.