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REFERENDUM: Nigeria’s Indigenous groups to stage One Million march before UN General Assembly

REFERENDUM: Nigeria’s Indigenous groups to stage One Million march before UN General Assembly

The Nigerian Indigenous Nationalities Alliance for Self-Determination (NINAS) have vowed to hold a One Million March in front of the United Nations Headquarters in New York, United States of America from 14th to 21st September, 2021 to demand a referendum on self-determination and abolition of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria.

The group, NINAS, which is an umbrella body of many self-determination movements in the Southern region of Nigeria and the Middle Belt was established as alliance of the self-determination initiatives across the three alliance territory blocs of the Lower Niger Congres for South South and South East, Middle Belt Forum for the Middle Belt bloc, as well as Ilana Omo Oodua (IOO) for Yoruba bloc.

The group seeks to end what they described as ‘fraudulent 1999 Constitution’ and end the ‘unworkable’ unitary union that the constitution foists and to champion the processes for self-determination by which sovereignty would be restored to the constituent regions of the alliance.

The One Million March, according to a statement signed by the Communications Manager to NINAS, Mr. Maxwell Adeleye, is expected to be led by a renowned historian, Emeritus Professor Banji Akintoye; respected scholar, Prof. Yusuf Turaki; Secretary-General of NINAS, Tony Nnadi, a lawyer; pioneer Commissioner for Education in Osun State and National Chairman of Ilana Omo Oodua, Prof Wale Adeniran, amongst others.

The Sun reported that announcement for the One Million March was made by the leaders and members of NINAS who signed the Constitutional Force Majure (CFM) declared on 16th December, 2020, rejecting the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria and calling for a United Nations supervised referendum. The One Million March has been scheduled to hold from 14th to 21st September, 2021

The self-determination agitators particularly targeted the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) that will hold from 14th to 21st September, 2021 in New York.

Adeleye stated that NINAS would call 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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The Freedom March, he said, would feature a demand from the United Nations to send a peacekeeping force to Nigeria to save the embattled indigenes, who are being daily massacred by criminal elements among Fulani herdsmen and other terrorists, including Boko Haram and ISIS operating with impunity.

The statement read in part: “We have read a trending statement authored by a faceless group demanding for the ban of Ilana Omo Oodua from making 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.”

“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 Headquaters in New York, United States from 14th to 21st September, 2021 to demand for 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.

“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!”

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