Advertisement
Politics

2023: “Deny Igbos presidency, risk remedial secession” – Ex-IPOB Deputy-Leader

Advertisement

Uche Mefor, the former Deputy-Leader of the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), has warned that denying the south-east 2023 presidency will “automatically” propel people of the region to “exercise” their self-determination ideology.

POLITICS NIGERIA reports that Mefor, in a recent social media post, insist that it is “clearly” the turn of the Igbos to produce the next president of Nigeria.

He fumed at “gang-ups” against the Igbos, by means of zoning policy in the choice of candidates for elective political offices.

Read Mefor’s full post below:

DENY IGBO BIAFRANS THE PRESIDENCY IN 2023 AND RISK REMEDIAL SECESSION—–THE GANG-UP AGAINST THE IGBO BIAFRANS BY THE REST OF NIGERIA REGARDING THE 2023 PRESIDENCY OF NIGERIA WILL AUTOMATICALLY MAKE THEM AN OPPRESSED OPPRESSED ( MINORITY) ENTITLED TO EXERCISE THEIR TO (EXTERNAL) SELF-DETERMINATION LEADING TO INDEPENDENCE THROUGH THE DOCTRINE OF REMEDIAL SECESSION

Just like we emphatically stated in December 21, and February/March 2022, Nigeria is fast completing the cycle as a candidate subject to the current debate on the application of the doctrine of remedial secession if the rest of Nigeria gang up against Igbo Biafrans. Put differently, Nigeria is likely to the first successful test case of the application of the doctrine of highly debated and controversial doctrine remedial secession because of the hypothetical conditions arising out of the contentions, debates, disagreements on the contentious issues of external self-determination flagged up by the different bodies (commissions, courts, legal scholars) at different times in the cases of Aaland case, Quebec case(domestic), to Loizidou v Turkey to opinion of the international law commission, to Katanga v Zaire etc.

Commission of Rapporteurs, set up by the League of Nations held that the Ålanders had rights to various forms of autonomy within Finland, but that the right to separate from Finland would not be triggered unless Finland disrespected the Ålanders’ meaningful exercise of autonomy within Finland and ultimately suggested that secession could be available as a “last resort when the State lacks either the will or the power to enact and apply just and effective guarantees” for minority group rights.

Any secessionist people would have to demonstrate that its rights to internal self-determination were being completely frustrated by the mother state in order to claim that its right to external self-determination had been triggered.

Whether anybody likes or not, It is our contention that it is the turn of the Igbos to produce the next president of Nigeria on the basis and on account of the fact that the Igbo Biafrans have been one the foundation pillars of the Nigerian state Union——and ever since, it has been an entrenched policy in the Nigerian political arrangement to rotate power between the North and the South. It follows, therefore, among these foundation members of the political union, only the Igbo Biafrans that have not been allowed to produce the civilian president of Nigeria. The Igbos Biafrans have talented ,able-bodied youths, celebrated middle-aged professionals, businessmen and politicians so the argument by some against people that there is no qualified candidates in Igbo Biafran territory is borne out of insincerity. Any candidate outside mainland Igbo territory is not a friend. Now that it is clearly the turn of the Igbos to produce the next president of Nigeria in 2023, zoning is now suddenly being jettisoned and everybody is running for the office of the president. What an injustice!

Regardless of these gang-ups, pro- Nigeria Igbo Biafran politicians must insist and demand and assert their political rights including their exercise of their right to access the highest political office in Nigeria while the pro-Biafra groups must concentrate on the Biafra territorial politics and ensure the political control of the political space in Biafraland.

The starting point for implying remedial secession is the safeguard clause of the Friendly Relations Declaration is :

“Nothing in the foregoing paragraphs shall be construed as authorizing or encouraging any action which would dismember or impair,totally or in part, the territorial integrity or political unity of sovereign and independent States conducting themselves in compliance with the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples as described above and thus possessed of a government representing the whole people belonging to the territory without distinction as to race, creed or colour.”

Nigeria is clearly not in compliance with “…..the principle of equal rights… Nor possess…..a government representing the whole people belonging to the territory without distinction as to race, creed or colour.” So many ethnic groupings are the victims of the Nigerian state negligence in this direction and it their responsibilities to trigger a call for remedial secession by calling the sovereignty of the Nigerian state to question. The Igbo Biafrans are at a vantage position to trigger this if the gang-up against them succeeds in 2023.

According to the persuasive opinion of the Supreme Court of Canada, ” ‘when a people is blocked from the meaningful exercise of its right to self-determination internally, it is entitled, as a last resort, to exercise it by secession’.

“A State whose government represents the whole of the people or peoples
Resident within its territory, on a basis of equality and without discrimination, and
Respects the principles of self-determination in its internal arrangements, is entitled to
Maintain its territorial integrity recognized by other States. Quebec does not meet the
Threshold of a colonial people or an oppressed people, nor can it be suggested that
Quebecers have been denied meaningful access to government to pursue their
Political, economic, cultural and social development.” (Reference by the
Governor-General concerning Certain Questions relating to the Secession of Quebec
From Canada, ([1998] 2 S.C.R. 217; 161 D.L.R. (4th) 385; 115 Int. Law Reps. 536),
Para. 154).

For sake of emphasis, the Nigerian state falls short and is guilty of all these against a number of ethnic groups in the Union including the Middlebelt, and the South South and South East (again, for ease of reference).

The Badinter Commission was clear that the right to self-determination in the noncolonial context could only exist within the constraints of territorial integrity of existing states. Thus, the Commission seemed to legitimize internal self-determination only in the noncolonial context.
But how has this panned out in Nigeria? Has Nigeria allowed meaningful exercise of internal self-determination to distinct ethnic groups that want it? The answer is obviously in the negative.
In the case of Loizidou v Turkey it was held that the right to self-determination through secession would be available where, ‘human rights are consistently and flagrantly violated or if they are without representation at all or are massively under representative in an undemocratic and discriminatory way’.

African Commission of Human and Peoples’ Rights in the Katangese Peoples’ Congress v. Zaire stated that:

“In the absence of concrete evidence of violations of human rights to the point
That the territorial integrity of Zaire should be called to question and in the absence of
Evidence that the people of Katanga are denied the right to participate in government
As guaranteed by Article 13 (1) of the African Charter, the Commission holds the view that Katanga is obliged to exercise a variant of self-determination that is compatible
With the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Zaire.” (Case 75/92,
Katangese Peoples’ Congress v. Zaire, p. 1.) .
The ultimate questions are :
1.Has there been concrete evidence of violations of human rights of Igbo Biafrans by the Nigerian state? The answer is yes.
2.Has there been evidence that Igbo Biafrans are denied the right to participate in government because of ethnicity, race and culture as guaranteed by Article 13(1) of the African Charter? The answer is but would be fully visible and complete when the gang up completes in 2023.
3.Taken together all these, have these violations reached the threshold and severity to such an extent that Igbo Biafrans must call the sovereignty of Nigeria to question? The answer is yes.
What should the state assembly member , governors and the legal luminaries in the Igbo Biafran territory do for us?
A.Begin to compile the incidences of these exclusions from the political life of the mother state called Nigeria.
B.Compile all the human rights violations from time immemorial till date.
C.There must be a co-ordinated passage bills that call the sovereignty of the Nigerian state to question in all the State Houses of Assembly in the Igbo Biafran territory and another recognising that territory autonomous and independent on account of Nigeria’s racial discrimination and oppression against Igbo Biafrans ( Article 20(1) of the African Charter on human and peoples rights). This is one of the dividends of democracy where the will of the people prevails and such people entitled and have the rights to determine their political future.
D. Head to the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights and lodge a complaint, same with the UN demanding a referral to the ICJ for its advisory opinion.
E. Equip yourselves for self defence in the event eventuality and defend yourselves where and when necessary.

Any other part of Nigeria under oppression, subjugation and other forms of systematic human rights violations must follow suit.

Advertisement
Show More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button