The Nigerian Indigenous National Alliance for Self-determination (NINAS) has asked the governments of the United States, Britain, France, Russia, Germany, and other top European countries to stop the sale of arms to the Nigerian government over rights violations.
The group in a petition to the Western nations alleged that previous arms sold to President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration have found their way into the hands of herdsmen, bandits and Boko Haram insurgents who are currently terrorising Nigerians in different parts of the country.
It asked the countries to impose heavy sanctions on the Nigerian government.
NINAS is the umbrella body of self-determination groups in the South and Middle Belt of Nigeria with Ilana Omo Oodua representing the Yoruba bloc, Lower Niger Congress representing the South-South and South East, and Middle Belt Forum representing the North-Central.
The group’s Communications Manager, Maxwell Adeleye, who disclosed this in a statement on Thursday, said the petition was signed by the renowned Historian, Emeritus Prof. Banji Akintoye, former President-General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo; Secretary-General of NINAS, Barr. Tony Nnadi and the pioneer Commissioner for Education in Osun State, Prof. Wale Adeniran, amongst others.
Adeniran is the Chairman of Ilana Omo Oodua, the umbrella body of the Yoruba self-determination groups.
The petition read: “We the people of the South and Middle Belt under the aegis of Nigerian Indigenous National Alliance for Self-determination call on you to sanction the government of Nigeria for undermining democratic ethics and abusing people’s rights to live; to own property; to liberty; to dignity; to peaceful assembly and to self-determination.
“The arms being sold to the Nigerian government with funds borrowed from your territory are now being used to kill, oppress, harass, intimidate and strangulate harmless protesters and defenceless people of the South and Middle Belt of Nigeria who are exercising their rights to self-determination and peaceful assembly.
“Boko Haram terrorists, Fulani herdsmen, and bandits are now maiming, harassing, and killing our people on the roads and in their farmlands with the same arms and ammunitions bought from your countries with impunity.
“Today, peaceful protest is an aberration in Nigeria. Opposition voices are now being arrested and caged behind the bar for demanding good governance and their inalienable right to self-determination.
“Freedom of speech is now an essential commodity in Nigeria. The leadership of Nigeria is now censoring the media to prevent free speech to alert the world to the ongoing genocide. Social Media is now under threat in Nigeria.
“We appeal to you, in the interest of peace-loving people of the South and Middle Belt of Nigeria to halt further sale of Arms to the Nigerian Government until the country surrenders the sovereignty of the people back to them.
“For the record, our cardinal demand as a group is for the Nigerian Government to function as the transitional government while a United Nations supervised referendum is organised so the people can exercise their self-determination right and end to unitary Nigeria which has been turned into an apartheid state.
“We demand unconditional 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.”