After a family meeting today,Tuesday,20th October,2020,it was agreed that all the planned celebrations to mark my 70th birthday on Tuesday,27th October,2020,be put on hold.
My family has taken this decision in sympathy with the families and comrades of Nigerians who have died or been injured since the unsettling situation, vide the anti-SARS demonstrations in the country started.
We also took this decision so as not to rubbish, or counter my patriotic act 53 years ago, in 1967, when while a 17-year old Form 3 student of African Church Grammar School, Apata-Ganga,Ibadan, Oyo State, I wrote a letter of appeal to the then Head of State,General Yakubu Gowon(rtd),to either release or charge to a court of law, Professor(then Mr)’ Wole Soyinka who had been clamped in indefinite detention, without trial, in Kaduna Prisons, for allegedly visiting the late Lieutenant-Colonel Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, the then Military Governor of the former Eastern Region of Nigeria.
I,in the spirit of freedom of speech and movement, call on President Muhammadu Buhari to please institute a platform for dialogue with all the dissenting groups, whereby divergent opinions will be heard and solutions to all the national burning issues will be found.
In the same vein, I humbly urge all parties clamouring for changes and answers to the national questions to continue to explore peaceful and legal channels in the search for a united country where equity, freedom, merit and integrity shall be the driving forces.
I seize this opportunity to apologise to all my invited guests and service providers, for this unexpected development.
I shall, in a short while, announce a new date for the celebration of my landmark birthday. Thank you.
Oloye ‘Lekan Alabi,Ekefa Olubadan of Ibadanland.