Daily Post is reporting that the Federal Government of Nigeria has been dragged to court by a constitutional lawyer, and former President of the Nigeria Bar Association, NBA, Olisa Agbakoba for alleged negligence of the Igbo-occupied South Eastern part of the country.
Agbakoba is also demanding N1trillion in the fundamental human rights suit filed before a Federal High Court for himself and on behalf of the South East Zone over alleged acts of discrimination and underdevelopment of the region.
In the suit brought in pursuant to section 42 of the 1999 constitution, the lawyer is further asking the court for an order of perpetual injunction restraining the Federal Government and its agents, servants or privies, or otherwise howsoever from further acts of discrimination against the applicant or any member of the Group/Class represented in the civil action.
Besides, the applicants are also claiming a whopping sum of N1trillion from the Federal Government as general damages to be shared among the five states of the South-East geo-political zone.
The suit is praying the court to “declare that the structural composition of the states in Nigeria, in this distribution: North-West, Seven States; North-Central, Six States; North-East, Six States; South-West, Six States; South-South, Six States; and South-East, Five States; creates a structural imbalance against the applicant and the Group/Class he represents to their political and economic disadvantage in federal legislative representation, ministerial/political and judicial appointments, and revenue allocation contrary to Section 14(3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, which requires reflection of federal character in conduct of public affairs, and accordingly a violation of Section 42 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, which prohibits discrimination against the applicant and the Group/Class represented based on Ethnic Grouping and place of origin.”
In an originating summons supported by an affidavit of 99 paragraphs and a statement of claim, the applicants rooted their action on the ground of alleged total neglect of the applicant’s geo-political zone by the Federal Government in terms of infrastructure and general federal presence making the region feel not part of the Federal Government (1st Respondent).
It is equally demanding the creation of two more states in the South-East geopolitical zone to balance with the seven states in the North-West.
The suit is also asking the Federal High Court for an order directing the Federal Government to forthwith, “prepare and send to the National Assembly for enactment, a bill to establish the South-East Development Commission (SEDC) and for ancillary matters, which body shall be charged with the execution of the said master plan and the general development of the South-East geo-political zone.”
Other grounds upon which the action was filed is the alleged abandonment of the Niger Bridge to collapse and failure to build the ‘Second Niger Bridge’ making the applicants feel isolated from other parts of 1st Respondent and causing them apprehension about disaster on crossing the existing bridge.
They cited the abandonment of federal roads, which are death traps and robbery baits and occasioning and constraining on the applicants’ grueling road journeys within the geo-political zone as another reason for the suit.
It is their contention that the failure to develop strategic new roads especially the Anam-Nzam federal road linking the South-East with the North-Central at Idah in Kogi State to give the applicants easy access to the northern part of Nigeria is discriminatory.
The grounds of the suit also include failure to exploit the Oil/Gas Reserves in Anambra Basin and stalling the applicants’ legitimate expectation from employment and derivation funds for development of the Applicant’s South-East Zone.
The applicants further cited the abandonment of the Enugu Colliery and depriving them legitimate expectation from employment and derivation funds for the development of the South-East zone as grounds of their action.
In addition, they also pointed out the failure to develop trade-friendly ports and customs policies and establish ‘ease-of-business’ platforms to assist the applicants’ trading brothers and sisters to do better and operate on a higher and modern scale in trading, which makes the applicants to spend money to support relatives.
The suit further raised concern over ”the failure to have an operational international cargo airport at Owerri to aid trading, which causes the applicants to spend huge sums of money to support trading relatives to haul airborne goods by road from Lagos, with the attendant risks.
“The failure to dredge the Lower Niger and establish a Port at Onitsha to aid trading which causes the applicants to spend huge sums of money to support trading relatives to haul seaborne goods by road from Port Harcourt or Lagos, with the attendant risks, has also prompted the action of the applicants.
”Low revenue allocation status on the South-East Zone as a result of failure to exploit Oil/Gas and Coal and as a result of the said structural imbalance is adduced as a ground for the suit.
Among other declarations sought, they want the court, to declare that the worsening menace of erosion in the South-East zone generally and in particular in Agulu, Nanka and Obosi in Anambra State, under the watch and neglect of the 1st Respondent, who responds to similar or less-threatening ecological problems in other Zones with dispatch and commitment, is discriminatory and a violation of the fundamental right of the applicant and the Group/Class represented guaranteed under Section 42 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999.
It is also their prayer that the court should make an order directing the 1st Respondent to “take immediate steps to check the excessively aggressive and nefarious, yet ineffective policing of the South-East Geopolitical Zone and putting an end to the extortion going on at the ubiquitous police check-points on the highways in the South-East Geopolitical Zone.”
Fulani People Own Nigeria, They’ll Rule Forever — Miyetti Allah
Bello Abdullahi Bodejo, National President of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, is not a stranger to controversy or incendiary statements. He has stirred the hornets’ nest again by saying that his Fulani people own Nigeria and, thus, have no reason to obtain permission from anybody before settling anywhere!
It was a re-echo of what Alhaji Yusuf Maitama Sule once said, “Everyone has a gift from God. The Northerners are endowed by God with leadership qualities. The Yoruba man knows how to earn a living and has diplomatic qualities. The igbo man is gifted in trade, commerce, and technological innovation. God so created us equally with purpose and different gifts.”
Umar Labdo, a professor at the faculty of humanities, Maitama Sule University, Kano, also said in an interview with The Punch that the Fulani are destined to lead Nigeria for a long time.
He said: “Those who rule are those that are more civilised and educated. Now, Fulani happened to be more educated than all other tribes in Nigeria before the Europeans came. We are the ones who brought literacy here as we have manuscripts, hundreds of them, which were written between 300 and 500 years ago, when no other tribe knew how to write. And that is why the lot fell on our people to lead in this country and we are still leading the people. We are destined to continue leading people; but I know, if people read this, they will say he is a supremacist or something like that, no! It is not like that. This is a burden and we pay for it. Sardauna was killed because he was a ruler. If he had not been a ruler, why would he have been killed? Murtala Mohammed (former military head of state) was also killed. Why? It was because he was a ruler.”
Bodejo told The Sun:
“You should know that the Fulani have a right to go and settle anywhere they like, it is in the constitution and you shouldn’t break any law. If Fulani herdsmen go into any bush and settle there, what is their offence?
If as they claimed that their cattle were destroying crops, what is the work of the commissioner of police, he should go and arrest them and charge them to court.
By the way, who has the land they claimed that the herdsmen have settled? I, Bello Abdullahi Bodejo, if I decide to go inside bush and settle in any community, I won’t ask for anybody’s permission and be doing my activities, but I won’t offend anybody.
Even the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, it was the Fulani that first settled there. After they settled in one place and leave, then farmers come and start farming, and town start springing up there.
It is only Fulani that can go and stay inside any bush they like. They have right to go and settle in any bush in this country without asking anybody for permission. It is not against the law in this country. Who would they go to take permission from, is it the animals in the bush? You see from the village to the bush they are claiming is theirs maybe over 100 kilometers. How can herdsmen go and settle in a bush that is over 100 kilometers away from where the people live and you expect them to go and take permission from anybody. Who owns the land?
I don’t see any place where people will try and drive away the Fulani; they have right in this country. They produced Nigeria. They produced the first prime minister. If they produced the first president, another president, another president and so on, are they not the owner of the country? Fulani are ruling Nigeria and they must continue to rule the country forever. That is the truth.”
I Don’t Believe President Buhari Is In Charge — Wole Soyinka [VIDEO]
Nobel laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, has said that he does not believe President Muhammadu Buhari is in charge of the country.
He made this statement in reference to the open letter written to Buhari by a retired colonel and former military administrator of Kaduna, Umar Dangiwa, over the president’s habit of appointing people from his section of the country into office.
Reacting to this in an interview on PlusTv Africa’s ‘One-On-One’ on Thursday, the playwright and political activist said the answer to the nation’s problem is decentralisation.
The renowned writer commended the former military administrator who has a tendency to hit the nail hard and go straight to the point factually without self-interest.
He said: “Umar Dangiwa is one of the really serious letter writers without self-interest and when I saw this I was appalled but I shouldn’t have been appalled in the first place. I was appalled by the silence that followed this revelation. I think those who are responsible for this criminal lopsidedness should be punished. It is not sufficient just to discuss it. It’s criminal.
“I have said this before. I don’t believe there is really anybody in charge in Aso Rock. I’m sorry to say this. I’ve been studying the trend over the past year and a half and I believe this president is not in charge of this nation, in so many aspects and directions.
“I’m convinced he’s not really and totally with it.
“It’s so serious. It is not the fact alone, we know the history of this. We know what it has caused the nation, and we know it isn’t over yet. And you say are launching an enquiry. That’s not enough. This man is not in charge.”
Watch the full interview here;
BREAKING: Buhari Nominates Okonjo-Iweala For WTO Director-General Position
President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the nomination of Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, former coordinating minister for the economy, for the position of director-general of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), TheCable reports.
In a document seen by TheCable on Thursday, Buhari withdrew the candidacy of Yonov Frederick Agah, Nigeria’s permanent representative to WTO, for the same position.
The election is scheduled to hold in Geneva, Switzerland in 2021 for a four-year term that would run from 2021 to 2025.
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