SEVERAL Nigerian civil society groups plan to hold a 1m man march in New York during the United Nations General Assembly’s (UNGA) 76th session in September where they will demand the abolition of Nigeria’s constitution and the right to self-determination.
Since 2015 when President Muhammadu Buhari assumed office, calls for the balkanisation of Nigeria have grown, mainly in response to the murderous attacks carried out by Fulani cattle herdsmen. Being an ethnic Fulani himself who keeps cattle, President Buhari is seen as being soft on the herdsmen, which has fuelled separatist movements.
In response, a coalition of separatist groups known as the Nigerian Indigenous Nationalities Alliance for Self-Determination (Ninas), has decided to organise this march to demand a referendum on self-determination and abolition of the 1999 constitution. Their march will be held in front of the UN headquarters in New York, during the UNGA session which takes place between September 14 and 21.
It will be led by the likes of Professor Banji Akintoye, Professor Yusuf Turaki, Tony Nnadi, and the national chairman of Ilana Omo Oodua, Professor Wale Adeniran. Ninas is the umbrella body of leading regional self-determination groups made up of the likes of Ilana Omo Oodua representing the southwest, the Lower Niger Congress representing the south-south and southeast and Middle Belt Forum representing the north central geo-political zone.
Ninas spokesman Maxwell Adeleye, called on all Nigerians to join the historic and epoch-making march, adding that they want the whole world to see the level of injustice, oppression and intimidation currently going on in Nigeria. He added that the coalition will be requesting that the UN send a peacekeeping force to Nigeria to demand a referendum to decide on the right to self-determination of the people who want an end the currently unitary system which has been turned into an apartheid state.