The patriarch of the Pan Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, Pa Reuben Fasoranti, has declared that Chief Ayo Adebanjo remains the leader of the group.
This was disclosed in a statement signed by Fasorantixs Personal Assistant, Adedapo Abiola, and made available to journalists on Wednesday in Akure, Ondo State capital.
The GUARDIAN reported that, the Personal Assistant to the patriarch, Adedapo Abiola, debunked as mere rumour reports that Adebanjo had been de-robed of his leadership position.
Earlier in the week, reports had been rife that Adebanjo, who is the acting leader of the group, had been suspended as a result of his non-cooperation with Pa Fasoranti in endorsing the All Progressives Congress presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, on Sunday.
Recall that, on Sunday, October 30, Tinubu was received by some Afenifere and Yoruba leaders at Fasoranti’s house in Akure, throwing their weight behind him ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Days after, the supposed endorsement had caused divisions within the group, between the Adebanjo-led faction for the Labour Party presidential candidate and the Fasoranti-led faction rooting for Tinubu.
But in a retraction of recent developments, Abiola said: “It has come to Papa R.F. Fasoranti’s knowledge that some sections of the media, especially the social media, have been ascribing to him false statements designed to cause confusion and polarise Afenifere.
“I have Papa’s permission to say that he has not said that Chief Adebanjo is no longer the acting leader of Afenifere or that all future Afenifere meetings should henceforth be held at his residence in Akure.”
“Papa’s main concern is the interest of Yoruba in the complex political situation in Nigeria. It is also his concern that Afenifere should survive in dignity and remain a purveyor of the interest of the Yoruba race.”