caution Envoy to respect Rule of Law in Nigeria
Chris Steven, Abuja
Lawyers and human rights activists under the aegis of League of African Democratic Lawyers have protested what they desrcribed as an attempt by the US government to destabilise Nigeria’s democracy by openly supporting secessionist agitation cum terrorists known as IPOB led by Nnamdi Kanu.
The lawyers said even after being proscribed by a competent court in Nigeria, the US government still went ahead to show open support to a group that has called for violence in Nigeria to achieve their seccession plot.
Barrister John Oboh, Country Representative of the group in a protest letter delivered to the Ambassador of the United States of America to Nigeria during a protest today urged the United States to urgently withdraw its endorsement of IPoB while assuring that it will continue to respect the internal decisions of Nigeria taken in accordance with its laws.
He said the lawyers shall be forced to carry out civil disobedience in tandem with democratic practices if the tacit support to IPOB by this mission is not withdrawn within the next 72 hours .
He raised concern that the action of the US government will now encourage other separatists groups in the continent to use violence and high scale abuse of human rights to promote their devilish aim and objectives in the society.
“Considering that the recognition of IPoB will simultaneously reignite all these separatist movements while encouraging even the politically oriented ones among them to turn violent, the various international organizations are not equipped to deal with continent-wide pockets of violent insurrections that will result. The remaining stable countries of the world must then be prepared to host the portion of Africa’s 1.2 billion people that will pour over their borders.”
He said consequent upon the group’s fears that a US endorsement of IPoB would spark a wave of separatist agitations across the continent, it is pertinent that the events in Nigeria are assessed on the strength of their continental impact and global ramifications.
He listed the following secessionist groups that will grow violent like IPoB in the hope that they will get similar endorsement from the United States.
They are Kabylie in Algeria; Lunda-Tchokwe and Cabinda in Angola; Bakassi and Ambazonia in Cameroon; Logone in Central African Republic; Anjouan in Comoros; State of South Congo in Republic of the Congo; Bas-Congo, Katanga and United Republic of Kivu in Democratic Republic of Congo, Bioko Island in Equitorial Guinea; Islamic State of Afaria, Gambela, Ogaden, Oromia and Sidama in Ethiopia;
Others are Mombassa Republic and Western Republic of Somalia in Kenya; Cyrenaica and Touboulandin Libya; Azawad in Mali; Rif and Western Sahara in Morocco; Free State of Caprivi in Namibia, Agadez and Tenere Republic in Niger; Batwaland in Rwanda; Somaliland in Somalai; Western Cape and Volkstaat in South Africa; Nuerland in recently breakaway South Sudan; Darfur in Sudan; Zanzibar in Tanzania; Kingdom of Buganda and Yiira Republic in Uganda; Barotseland in Zambia; and Matabeleland in Zimbabwe.
He said, “the concern is that not many of these countries have the resources or the framework to contain such agitation with the efficiency with which Nigeria did without creating grave humanitarian situations that require global intervention.
He said IPoB speaking through Kanu and its other commanders have repeatedly insisted on “Referendum or Violent Breakup of Nigeria”.
According to him, this stand interprets it as a definite declaration of war since there is no provision in the Nigerian Constitution for the kind of referendum demanded by the secessionists.