Akintoye, others demand referendum from UN
Leaders from the South and Middle Belt of Nigeria, under the aegis of Nigerian Indigenous Nationalities Alliance for Self-Determination (NINAS) have said they will hold one million-man march in front of the United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York, the United States in September to demand a referendum on self-determination and abolition of the 1999 Constitution.
According to the Communications Manager to NINAS, Mr. Maxwell Adeleye in a statement on Tuesday in reaction to a trending statement by a faceless group demanding the ban of Ilana Omo Oodua (IOO) from making a presentation before the upcoming UNGA parley.
Adeleye said contrary to media reports Ilana Omo Oodua will not be making any official presentation at UNGA but “will be holding a one million-man march opposite the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the United States from 14th to 21st September 2021,” disclosing that the march will be led by a renowned historian, Prof. Banji Akintoye, Prof. Yusuf Turaki, Secretary-General of NINAS, Barr. Tony Nnadi; Prof. Wale Adeniran, who is National Chairman of Ilana Omo Oodua, among others.
Adeleye said NINAS, the umbrella body of leading regional self-determination groups in the South and Middle Belt of Nigeria with Ilana Omo Oodua representing the Yoruba blocs, Lower Niger Congress representing the South-South and southeast and Middle Belt Forum representing the Middle Belt blocs, shall be calling on all indigenous people from the South and Middle Belt around the world to unite and stand together in solidarity in their demand for the restoration of their sovereignty, their inalienable right to their self-determination, their assets and right to freely choose their association with any state.
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According to him, the freedom march will feature a demand from the UN to send a peacekeeping force to Nigeria to save the embattled indigenes who are being daily massacred by Fulani herdsmen and other terrorists, including Boko Haram and ISIS operating with impunity.
“We have read a trending statement authored by a faceless group demanding for the ban of Ilana Omo Oodua from making a presentation before the world at the upcoming United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
“We wish to say very expressly that Ilana Omo Oodua, contrary to media reports, will not be making any official presentation at UNGA.
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“What will be happening at UNGA is that the members of Ilana Omo Oodua under the leadership of Emeritus Professor Banji Akintoye alongside other members of NINAS from the Lower Niger and Middle Belt of Nigeria will be holding a One Million March opposite the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the United States from 14th to 21st September 2021 to demand a referendum to decide on the rights to self-determination of the people who want an end to unitary systems of Nigeria which has been turned into an apartheid state.
“We shall also be demanding, first and foremost, for the abolition of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria which we have shown to be a fraud perpetrated against the people of the South and Middle Belt of Nigeria given that the people did NOT make it,” the statement read.
Speaking further, Adeleye said NINAS was already “mobilising all sons and daughters of the Lower Niger (South East, South-South), South West and Middle Belt’s clans living in the United States of America to stand up for their Indigenous Nationalities by participating in the one week one Million March for the liberation of their people.”
“The planned march shall be historic and epoch-making. We want the whole world to see the level of injustice, oppression, and intimidation currently going on in Nigeria. The time is NOW!” the statement said.