Written By Chima Onyekachi
<SUNBIGHT>~Opinion~Nkwo~12th May,2022 @ 06:19 WAT
THIS is purposely to inform my esteemed readers that IPOB and MASSOB are pro-Biafran groups but are not exclusive in seeking the right to self-determination of the people of Biafra.
I want to inform every foreign embassies, emissaries, high commissions and diplomatic posts that the people of Biafra are not restricted to members of IPOB and MASSOB but these are Indigenous peoples domiciled in the old eastern region of Nigeria and suffered greatly a genocide between 1967-70.
This is specifically to appeal to the British High Commission in Nigeria on its decision to exclude Indigenous Biafrans from all asylum and human rights claims made in the UK.
As much as its decision is for those persons affiliated with IPOB and MASSOB, efforts must be made not to enforce the commission’s decision to non-members of these pro-Biafran groups.
Though it must be noted that the proscription of IPOB by the Nigerian government has an ongoing law suit filed by attorneys of the directorates of IPOB for the de-proscription of the pro-Biafran group as a terrorist sect.
I beg to question, on what ground is MASSOB also included in the exclusion for asylum in the UK?
The UK government must understand that Indigenous Biafrans are been targeted with violence including killings by the Nigerian security forces for seeking the right to self-determination as recognized by international laws and instruments.
Indigenous peoples rights are collective rights. In essence, they are vested in Indigenous individuals that organise themselves as peoples.
The international community clearly affirms that Indigenous people require recognition of their collective rights as peoples to enable them to enjoy human rights.
Also, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples articulates in its Article 1 & 2 that Indigenous peoples and individuals are: free and equal to all peoples and individuals and have the right to be free from any kind of discrimination in the exercise of their rights, in particular that based on their indigenous origin and identity.
The British High Commission should understand that the right to self-determination in Nigeria is grossly abused by the Muhammadu Buhari led government as he openly disclosed in a press interview with Martin Dennise of Aljazeera in March 2016 in which he blatantly refused to watch the video clip of the shooting and killing of peaceful IPOB demonstrators which occurred in Aba, Abia State.
The UK government must accord to Indigenous Biafrans the same respect and human rights protection as accorded the people of Scotland seeking the same right to self-determination.■