The Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF), has praised lawyers of Igbo extraction who volunteered to join the defence team of the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra(IPOB), Mazi Nnamdi Kanu at the commencement of his trial at the Abuja Federal High Court yesterday.
ADF which gave the commendation in a statement by its spokesman, Abia Onyike, said it believes that such show of solidarity was essential as the political trial of Kanu gathers momentum.
According to the Prof Uzodinma Nwala led group, “It is our considered opinion that the Self-determination struggle of the Igbo Nation was the most progressive step in overcoming the present crisis which has bedevilled the chaotic Nigerian federation, following decades of injustice, oppression and suppression of the legitimate rights of Ndigbo as a major Ethnic Nationality in Nigeria.”
ADF noted that, “Nnamdi Kanu is not a common criminal and cannot be treated or tried as such. He is a freedom fighter like other genuine Igbo Patriots engaged in the Igbo liberation struggle. The United Nations in 2007 passed a resolution asserting the right of Ethnic Nationalities to Self-determination.”
The group called on the President Muhammadu Buhari led federal government to create an atmosphere for dialogue with those agitating for self determination instead of criminalising their agitations.
“The Federal Government should create a conducive atmosphere for dialogue with agitators for Self-determination instead of pursuing them like common criminals,” the group said.
“The situation in Nigeria today shows clearly that there is an unstoppable longing for freedom by all Ethnic Nationalities which is a rejection of the forced federalism created by Lord Frederick Lugard in 1914.
“If the oppressors refuse to embrace dialogue and diplomacy in resolving the crises of the Nigerian monolithic federation, then the Ethnic Nationalities reserve the capacity to assert their rights to Self-determination, which would ultimately lead to the disintegration of the country into Autonomous Republics be bb, existing under the banner of the African Union.”