Mallam Garba Shehu, Snr Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity
Mallam Garba Shehu, Snr Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity
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Yoruba Nation agitators-IPOB joint protest at UN headquarters in New York shocking, worrying development — Presidency

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“IPOB is a designated terrorist organisation. It has now publicly revealed a 50,000 strong paramilitary organisation”
The ongoing protest by Yoruba Nation agitators, IPOB and the Middle Belt group at the United Nations headquarters in New York has attracted the attention of the Nigerian Government.

The Presidency said on Wednesday that the staging of the protest in collaboration with IPOB was shocking.

“It was, however shocking, to see “Yoruba Nation” advocates yesterday unequivocally throw their lot in with Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
“IPOB is a designated terrorist organisation. It has now publicly revealed a 50,000 strong paramilitary organisation,” it said in a statement by Mr Garba Shehu,  the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity.
It faulted Yoruba Nation agitators for “keeping association” with lPOB.
The government, therefore, threatened to “judge the Yoruba Nation agitators by the company they keep”, saying that no one should take them seriously.
“It regularly murders security services and innocent civilians with a significant uptick of violent attacks this year.
“And it is currently attempting to hold Nigerian states hostage with orders to stay at home under threat of terror.

“Without doubt, Nigerians and the entire world will judge Yoruba Nation by the company it keeps.

“No one can take seriously this organisation if it continues its IPOB association. When their allies systematically trample human rights, it raises sober questions about their claims to uphold the values of the UN,” the Buhari Presidency said.

Describing the cooperation as a worrying development, the statement, a copy of which was given to Persecondnews, noted: “Once parsed with Yoruba Nation’s increasingly violent rallies in Nigeria.

“Actions and associations speak louder than words. Yoruba Nation’s talk of human rights promotion must therefore be ignored.”

Persecondnews had reported the staging of one-million-man freedom march on Tuesday, September 14 at the ongoing 76th UN General Assembly at the UN headquarters in New York, United States by the Nigerian Indigenous Nationalities Alliance for Self-Determination (NINAS) .
The protest is called to draw international support for their cause which includes an end to the genocide being perpetrated by herdsmen in the Middle Belt and Southern Nigeria under the guise of open grazing.
The President’s Chief of Staff, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari and the Foreign Affairs Minister, Geoffrey Onyema among others are attending the General Assembly while President Muhammadu Buhari is scheduled to address the Assembly on September 24.
It will be recalled that the 17 governors from Southern Nigeria met and came up with a communique banning open grazing in their states with effect from Sept. 1.
Virtually all the states have passed the anti-open grazing bill and assented by the governors.
But Miyetti Allah, the herders’ umbrella body in the North had kicked against the law and threatened that it was heading to court to challenge it.
The protest which will last till September 21, coincides with the 76th UN General Assembly which got underway on Tuesday, Sept. 14.
The protesters drawn from Yoruba Self Determination Groups, Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and other agitators from the Middle Belt are also asking the United Nations to supervise referendums in the Middle Belt and southern parts of Nigeria for self-determination.
The separatist campaigners said they rejected the 1999 Nigerian Constitution in its entirety.
Speaking in New York during the first day of the protest, the Chairman of NINAS, Prof. Banji Akintoye, a professor of History, and other leaders said the objective of the one-million-man march is to draw the attention of world leaders to state-sponsored terrorism in some parts of Nigeria.

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