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Nigeria@57: We Can’t Celebrate When Ethnic Minorities Are Still Under Internal Colonialism – IYC

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Barr. Roland Oweilaemi Pereotubo

Ijaw Youth Council, IYC worldwide has said that Nigeria cannot celebrate true independence until the “1999 military Constitution” is dump for a people-oriented constitution which recognizes political autonomy, self-determination, devolution of power to the component States as against the quasi-federal system currently in practice in the country. 

IYC’s factional President President, Barr. Roland Oweilaemi Pereotubo in a statement by his Special Assistant Media, Barr. Alaowei Cleric, said that Nigeria have nothing to celebrate with the “military Constitution” which it terms as the worst democratic gift given to Nigerians by the last military junta still being enforced.

According to IYC, the 1999 Constitution set the tune for internal colonialism where some Nigerians are subjected as servants to the others. 

The statement read in full: As Nigerians are celebrating 57 years of Independence, the 7th IYC President,  sees the celebration as a gathering of stoical dancers. Nigerians, especially the ethnic minorities are still under internal colonialism.

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There cannot be anything called Independence when some ethnic groups are under the colony of the majority ethnic groups. The political subjugation and annexation of the minority ethnic groups to live as free citizens in a Country that belongs to everyone smack of a Country lacking Democratic independent.

Laws have been enacted for over the years through legislative processes by these domineering major tribes to colonise the minorities.

The growing political marginalisation and economic strangulation as well as the economic apathy in the management of the natural resources in the Niger Delta region is a fall out of the internal colonialism Nigeria is practicing.

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Nigeria cannot attain Independence until its draconian, obnoxious and inimical laws are rejigged to accommodate the interest of the people whose lands produce the resources.

The 1999 military Constitution is the worst democratic gift given to Nigerians by the last military junta. The Constitution set the tune for internal colonialism where some Nigerians are subjected as servants to the others.

What Nigerians need to celebrate an independent Country devoid of internal rift is to enact a Constitution that is collectively made by the people. The reports of the various constitutional conferences, especially the 2014 confab report, if implemented would have salvage the situation.

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Many Nigerians are not happy celebrating the Country’s Independence. Doing so seems like celebrating slavery. The Country is in dare need to be restructured. Those who are opposed to restructuring do not know its importance to the unity of this Country. Restructuring must not be confused with breakup. Restructuring means political-cum economic freedom. It will make Nigeria a truly Federal state where the people will see themselves as free and equal citizens in their fatherland.

The ethnic minorities particularly the Niger Delta people will also want to breath the air of freedom in the Country. The present political arrangement does not accommodate our interest as equal partners in the Nigerian project. We are being subjected as second fiddle human beings in the Country we all called our own. 

IYC in collaboration with other other ethnic groups will continue to champion the cause of restructuring which in our understanding is resource control, true fiscal federalism, devolution of power to the component States as against the quasi-federal system being currently in practice, political autonomy and self-determination for all ethnic minorities in the Country. We will not back down on our collective struggle to make Nigeria attain a truly Independence status.

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