ICHEOKU says they did it, deservedly and rightly earned; the boys from Paris. ICHEOKU says congratulations.



ICHEOKU says he is coming with a clear-eyed view of what the United States of America constitution provides and will not legislate from the bench. ICHEOKU says definitely the right pick, so CONFIRM him now and right away and without any delay or much ado. Congratulation.


Lisa Page: “Trump is not ever going to become president, right? Right?!”

Peter Strzok: “No. No he’s not. We’ll stop it.”

ICHEOKU says if this is not corruption of the worst type, what else so qualifies? So sad the length these guys went to truncate the will of the American people; yet they will turn around and accuse other countries of corruption and you wonder is it only when money exchanges hands that there is corruption. Pitifully SAD.


“The only obstruction President Trump committed was in obstructing Queen Crooked Hillary Clinton from the White House.” - Jesse Watters, Watters World.


“The United States no longer makes empty threats. When I make promises, I keep them.” - President Donald John Trump.

ICHEOKU says exactly why he is now fondly nicknamed the Promise Keeper and he keeps his promises, one promise at a time.


America will not be held hostage to nuclear blackmail. We will not allow American cities to be threatened with destruction. And we will not allow a regime that chants “Death to America” to gain access to the most deadly weapons on Earth." - President Donald John Trump.


ICHEOKU says what does the Deep State have on AG Jeff Sessions that has purchased his quiet and inaction over the excesses of the Russian Collusion witch hunt? Something definitely does not look right and apparently seems awry that the Attorney General appears so constricted to do anything to bring the never ending "investigation" to a conclusion. How much longer will the American people wait to have the matter concluded and what will it take. As a member of Team MAGA, from the basket of deplorables, who defended him when the president was threatening to fire him, ICHEOKU is not particularly satisfied with the "playing it safe" attitude which Jeff has adopted thus far and urge him to find any possible way to make the investigators finish their job immediately and without any further delay.


ICHEOKU says he has all it takes to turn Nigeria around and Make Nigeria Great Again. He is highly cerebral; he is well traveled and is highly exposed internationally; he is a doer with a can-do spirit and attitude which translates to impossible is nothing as it does not exists in his dictionary; he is fully accomplished person who turned around the nearly moribund behemoth UBA and created thousands of jobs both in Nigeria and overseas; and above all, he is youthful and has age on his side and you ask yourself, what else is anyone looking for in a leader for Nigeria that is on bended knees and begging for leadership other than a man with his proven record. If he can do this in the private sector, he can also mission accomplish such in the public sector and resuscitate a Nigeria that is in distress. CHEOKU is emphatic that Tony Elumelu is a highly qualified, fit and proper person to lead Nigeria out of its present woods of near comatose and under performing achievements. Lets go to work Nigerians and make his candidature both viable and achievable. We can do this fellas; so lets urge Tony to run, run Tony run and together lets Make Nigeria Great Again. If Trump can do it, so can Tony.


"If the Syria regime uses this poisonous gas again on its people, it will be bombed again. The United States of America is locked and loaded. When our president draws a redline, our president enforces the redline." - Nikki Haley, United States of America Ambassador to the United Nations.



ICHEOKU says Russia's Vladimir Putin has one good opportunity to finally move back into the comity of civilized nations and stop his despotic mentality which always sees him flocking amidst his fellow dictators. But if he choses to remain in the cold and remain in Kremlin where he has been holed in since 1999, too bad. His too long stay in power is only damaging Russia but not helping it; and gradually turning Russia into a third world country where only one man dictates what goes on in the country. Putin, change your ways; let true democracy reign in Russia. Salute



ICHEOKU says you cannot get a more American American and he is a hardcore America First nationalist as they come. President Donald John Trump's pick to succeeded fired National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster is the real deal. He is a hard-nosed American First protagonist, who does not shy away from projecting America's power through strength and who is not afraid to have America go it alone if need be. ICHEOKU says hopefully the president has found the very person who will help him achieve and implement his policy objectives in John Bolton. But as far as MAGA and AF agendas are concerned, Ambassador John Bolton is one heck of a good pick and a right fit for the job. He will help President Donald John Trump with doing his job for the American people. ICHEOKU says congratulations to the Mustachioed One. Let the governance of MAGA now really begin.



ICHEOKU says they pretend to be guardians of free speech but wants to tele-guide other peoples thinking by limiting what they can freely say; especially if you are a conservative and holds opinions which are favorable of President Donald John Trump and critical of Queen Crooked Hillary Clinton. Unfortunately, they will not succeed but can only force people to opt out of the live wasting exercise of gluing one's eyeballs to the platform. An exercise which does not add anything of value to users, nor pays them anything for helping them bring more eyeballs to the portal. Instead of being grateful that people are helping them bilk advertisers of billions of dollars with their riveted eyeballs, they now want to micromanage everyone's thought as if they are doing one a favor by letting them waste their time using Facebook. ICHEOKU says will not be cowered nor intimidated; they can block ICHEOKU all the heck they want but ICHEOKU will not bow to Facebook's attempt to control ICHEOKU's thoughts and would rather permanently part ways with the Mark Zuckerberg globalist weapon of mass control than kowtow to a group thinking. To hell with this attempt to exact undue control and turn everyone into a herd mind.


"There is no allegation in this indictment that any American was a knowing participant in this illegal activity. There is also no allegation in the indictment that the charged conduct altered the outcome of the 2016 election." - Rod Rosenstein, Deputy Attorney General of the United States of America.

ICHEOKU says this determination, for every intent and purpose, now lays to rest the "Collusion with the Russians" hogwash; as nobody can be guilty of an offense which requires awareness to ground when he or she is not aware of it. Collusion is a conspiracy and requires a proactive participation coupled with a guilty knowledge to bring about the purpose of the conspiracy. Therefore, when will the Special Counsel address the nation and tell Americans that there is no there, there, in the Russian Collusion investigation and save America further bleeding both in resources, time and unity. Enough of the sore loser antics of the Democratic Party which does not know how to take a loss and learn to work to fix what went wrong, instead of continuously pointing a finger at a mirage that is the Russian Collusion, in its bid to find something to blame for its ineptitude that led to the epochal loss of November 8th, 2016.


"POTUS WANTS TO KNOW EVERYTHING WE ARE DOING." - Lisa Page to boyfriend Peter Strzok, two FBI officials.

ICHEOKU says the POTUS then was President Barack Hussein Obama, who had previously denied and lied to the American people that he does not dabble into any FBI's investigative matter. Really?



"Americans fill the world with art and music. They push the bounds of science and discovery. And they forever remind us of what we should never ever forget: The people dreamed this country. The people built this country. And it's the people who are making America great again. As long as we are proud of who we are, and what we are fighting for, there is nothing we cannot achieve. As long as we have confidence in our values, faith in our citizens, and trust in our God, we will not fail. Our families will thrive. Our people will prosper. And our Nation will forever be safe and strong and proud and mighty and free." - President Donald John Trump.


ICHEOKU says congratulations to President Donald John Trump for successfully steering America's ship of States for a full year. What the naysayers said will not happen is a reality which they are finding extremely difficult to live with. But their preferences notwithstanding, Make America Great Again is on course and nobody will torpedo it. Once again, congratulations to the leader of Team MAGA on the anniversary of his being sworn in as the 45th POTUS.


ICHEOKU says following an examination of so many nominated individuals, we have determined that this year 2017's man of the year is President Donald John Trump, the 45th President of the United States of America. He came into office shooting on both hips and as the year draws to an end, his both guns are still firing and smoking. For standing up to the world and starring down American detractors and being the cheerleader and champion in chief of America, the leader of Team Make America Great Again has earned ICHEOKU's man of the year award 2017. Congratulations to President Donald John Trump.


ICHEOKU says a wisdom of Solomon come to judgment; it is about time the child is given to the rightful mother. Salute to the courage of President Donald John Trump.


"Together with our allies, America's warriors are prepared to defend our nation using the full range of our unmatched capabilities. No one — no dictator, no regime and no nation — should underestimate, ever, American resolve."



ICHEOKU says Queen Crooked Hillary Clinton was caught pants down colluding with the Russians and she has been trying so hard to pull the wool over the eyes of American people over whodunnit. What a lying, contriving, manipulative woman she is, who lies so easily that you wonder whether truth actually exists in her lexicon. Pitiful.



ICHEOKU says finally the circle is about being completed and American people and the world at large will come to know who in fact did the collusion. Queen Crooked Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Congress paid Fusion GPS to produce the fake Russian dossier which former CIA chief James Clapper said was the basis for the Trump investigation. Yet, the investigation is still ongoing, despite the now established fact that the basis of it was a manufactured phony. But hey, we shall see.

ICHEOKU says still wondering WHAT HAPPENED and the reason 33,000 emails were deleted and bleach washed? Hopefully American people will soon confirm their suspicion that those shouting themselves hoax with Russian Collusion might indeed be the ones who actually colluded with the Russians. So much for the Russian Reset button. Queen Crooked Hillary Clinton, simply too crooked.



ICHEOKU says another lucky one that survived the abortionist's pincers from the over 360,000 unlucky ones that get flushed out each year. May God help us all have a better resolution about unwanted pregnancies.


ICHEOKU says from being disrespectful to the flag to being unappreciative of the services of the military to overall being anti America; NFL players must learn to check their political activism outside the stadiums. They must not kneel on our dime. ICHEOKU supports the president 1000% on this and hereby calls on every player to respect the sensibilities of the many differently opined fans who paid to watch a game and not to be made mad by their personal political agenda.


“The United States Government is strongly committed to Nigeria’s unity. Important political and economic issues affecting the Nigerian people, such as the allocation of resources, are worthwhile topics for respectful debate in a democracy. Within the context of unity, we encourage all Nigerians to support a de-escalation of tensions and peaceful resolution of grievances. The Indigenous People of Biafra is not a terrorist organization under US law.” - Russell Brooks, United States of America.



"When you lose to somebody who has a 40 percent popularity, you don’t blame other things — Comey, Russia — you blame yourself. So what did we do wrong? People didn’t know what we stood for, just that we were against Trump. And still believe that." - Senator Charles Schumer, Senior Senator from the State of New York and Democratic Minority Leader in the Senate. ICHEOKU says the statement spoke volume and it spoke for itself. Finally it seems the Democrats have finally turned the corner and are now ready to face up to their abysmal performance in the last presidential election by acknowledging that the American people indeed choose Trump over their Hillary Clinton. Thankfully, they will also now rest their "Russians Did It" cockamamie and find a message they can present to the people and for the good of the country.. Time to move the process forward is now as American people did not buy into the crap of a Russian collusion which they tried unsuccessfully to sell to them.


"North Korea best not make any more threats to the United States. They will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen. As I said, they will be met with the fire and fury and, frankly, power." - President Donald John Trump. ICHEOKU says the Michelin Tire midget at Pyongyang is definitely courting trouble and messing with the wrong man. He probably thinks Barack Obama the redline president is still in office; but unbeknownst to him there is a new sheriff in town and his name is Donald John Trump and he does not mess around. Hopefully China can rein in the little man before he commits mass suicide with his North Korean people.



ICHEOKU says once again the diminutive midget of Pyongyang has been advised to heed the resolution of the United Nations firm stand against his continuing provocations; and that the total wiping out of his North Korea is now an option should he force the hands of the United States of American military. In a statement by the Defense Secretary Jim Maddog Mattis over its latest nuclear test, the secretary said “Our commitment among the allies are ironclad. Any threat to the United States or its territories, including Guam, or our allies will be met with a massive military response, a response both effective and overwhelming. We are not looking to the total annihilation of a country, namely North Korea, but as I said, we have many options to do so.” ICHEOKU says does not really know the joker that guy has, but whatever it is will likely very soon be forced out. The world including ICHEOKU is waiting and watching.


ICHEOKU says the time has come and the time is now for the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra to be allowed to choose their self governance and exit from Nigeria going forward.. A referendum on the future of Biafra is a legitimate demand of the people and it is their right to so do. The people of the Nation of Biafra want to go their own way because of the hostilities from other member nations of Nigeria. Let the United Nations order a referendum and let the people decide their own Biafraexit.


"There can be no coexistence with this violence. There can be no tolerating it, no accepting it, no excusing it, and no ignoring it. Every time a terrorist murders an innocent person and falsely invokes the name of God, it should be an insult to every person of faith. Terrorists do not worship God; they worship death. If we do not act against this organized terror, then we know what will happen and what will be the end result. Terrorism's devastation of life will continue to spread, peaceful societies will become engulfed by violence, and the futures of many generations will be sadly squandered. If we do not stand in uniform condemnation of this killing, then not only will we be judged by our people, not only will we be judged by history, but we will be judged by God." - President Donald John Trump.


ICHEOKU says it is worth fighting for, self determination and it is not a crime for a people to aspire for self governance. Indigenous Peoples of Biafra are marching forward and hopefully they will soon get to the promised land. Viva Biafra.

"When two raging fires meet together, they do consume the thing that feeds their fury. Though little fire grows great with little wind, yet extreme gusts do blow out fire." - William Shakespeare, The Taming of the Shrew


“I reached the pinnacle of success in the business world. In others’ eyes, my life is an epitome of success. However, aside from work, I have little joy. Non-stop pursuing of wealth will only turn a person into a twisted being, just like me. God gave us the senses to let us feel the love in everyone’s heart, not the illusions brought about by wealth. Memories precipitated by love is the only true riches which will follow you, accompany you, giving you strength and light to go on. The most expensive bed in the world is the sick bed. You can employ someone to drive the car for you, make money for you but you cannot have someone to bear sickness for you. Material things lost can be found. But there is one thing that can never be found when it is lost – Life. Treasure Love for your family, love for your spouse, love for your friends. Treat yourself well. Cherish others.” - SJ


"The threat of evil is ever present. We can contain it as long as we stay vigilant, but it can never truly be destroyed. - Lorraine Warren (Annabelle, the movie)


“I’m not that interested in material things. As long as I find a good bed that I can sleep in, that’s enough.” - Nicolas Berggruem, the homeless billionaire.

Thursday, August 14, 2008


Today, August 14th 2008 is a day that will forever live in infamy as Aso Rock makes the transfer of Nigerians of Bakassi origin to the Cameroons, a fait accompli. It is a very sad day that will be sorely remembered as the day Umaru Yar'Adua permanently stained his soul, as the man under whose watch Bakassi was thrown out of Nigeria. And this was despite the strong opposition by Nigerians and the sentiments expressed by the minority judgment of Honorable Judge Abdul Koroma of the International Court of Justice at the Hague in the matter of Bakassi, between Nigeria and Cameroon.

It is unfortunate that Nigeria do not have men with backbone as their leaders. Their lame excuse is that Nigeria desires to be seen as a country that obeys rules of court, a law-abiding country where the rule of law reigns supreme and that respecting the ICJ's decision will make Nigeria to be respected internationally. Further that such deference might make it easier for Nigeria to secure a seat at the United Nations permanaent seat as a voting member. You must be kidding me? Eeh! Icheoku says that Nigeria should understand that respect, unlike a chieftaincy title, is never conferred but is earned by distinguished abilities and achievements. If Nigeria wants to command international respect, they must first put their house in order - conduct free elections and not impose a weakling Umaru Yar'Adua on the country as their president. Also elect as governors, people who are not money launderers and looters of the treasury! Also make the criminality of 419 unprofitable! Also make sure that the NDDC chairman and his cohorts trust less in juju and be smart with their brains about its non-efficacy. Above all Nigeria should try to provide for her citizens including protecting them while overseas instead of their heads being choopped-off like chicken everywhere! Also Nigeria should be a strong back-boned country, not pandering to a decision by ICJ awarding Bakassi to Cameroon despite lack of evidence as to their claim or root of title thereto; a decision which flies in the face of historical and administrative facts over Bakassi since state-hoods emerged in Africa.
Nigeria cannot earn respect by cowardly obeying what her masters in Europe and America want her to do, including ceding an integral part of her territory to the Cameroon. It is regrettable and a day like this recalls back the memory of Tunde Idiagbon/Buhari regime - a regime which tried to sanitize Nigeria and provided Nigeria some backbone. It shall not be well with all the conspirators and executioners of the Bakassi enslavement project!
Nigeria wants respect of the international community, international community which is fully seized of developments in Nigeria through their ambassadors, embassies and foreign correspondents. Who will respect Nigeria when her citizens are now the indicators of fraud anywhere and everywhere in the world? Who will respect Nigeria when her "selected" governors are brazen treasury-looters and you have an ex-president who have not accounted for his stewardship and a present one who did not win an election? Who will respect Nigeria but treat her like a scumbag merely tolerated just for the oil deposits; when she cannot feed her population? If Nigeria is desirous of respect, she should make the conditions at home more tolerable to checkmate her citizens rapid migration abroad with some of them loitering around the globe like wildebeests. Who will respect Nigeria when conditions at home has forced so many of her citizens to become global nomads, economic, political and social fugitives and wanderers all over the world. If you want respect then do the heavy lifting and like they say, charity begins from home. Nigeria sholud provide her citizens adequate security, construct roads, provide power supply, provide conditions for businesses to thrive which leads to job-creations in the process. Who will respect Nigeria when the totality of her people are practically crime-prone just lying in wait for time and opportunity to strike? And the government is akin to Ali Baba and the forty thieves? Who will respect Nigeria when her "president" did not win an election but was imposed on the country by a cabal led by Olusegun Obasanjo?
But does Aso Rock care? Why would they when nobody voted them in hence not afraid of paying political price for their ill-advised action. Why would Umaru Yar"Adua stand up to Cameroon when he is not under any obligation to Nigerians including Bakassi to be a good president; after-all his allegiance is to the cabals that installed him in office. Umaru Yar"Adua does not care a rat-ass about Bakassi as his primary constituency is the international community who he desperately needs their coveted recognition; but like a known typical fraudster, Umaru is as good as the amount of oil they can squeeze out from him. Musharraf of Pakistan will soon be history - use me and dump me syndrome!

Today also marks the beginning of Nigeria's gradual but sure disintegration and history will look back to this day and confirm it, as the day the melting of the wax began. How can a part of a whole be forcibly removed from its base and the people that perpetrated this, expect the remainder to still remain intact? Any entity that starts going down stays on downward spiral until its' eventual demise or collapse. Turkey still holds Cyprus; Israel still holds Golan Heights and Bekkaa valley and Nigeria is being strong-armed to give up Bakassi. It is a very sad commentary in Nigeria that other Nigerians stoodby and watched Bakassi banished forever from Nigeria? It is regrettable indeed! Who knows what part next will be forced out of the unholy alliance called Nigeria! To the people of now ostracised from Nigeria-Bakasssi, please pray fervently until something happens and then you can return to your motherland; and may be as part of the new Republic of Niger Delta or whatever name they choose to call it when their stated intention of a statehood finally comes to fruition! Umaru Yar'Adua has been over-ruling so many of Obasanjo's acts, including existing contracts but why he played coy in the matter of Bakassi is for historians to adumbrate on. Icheoku prays that posterity will not give him a passing grades for this action! A true leader would have used the resistance of his country men and women to forestall the transfer and if need be send in the boys in khaki! My heart bleeds for Nigeria, especially the "it does not concern me attitude" Nigerians. A typical Nigeria it would seem is not his brother's keeper hence Bakassi can go to hell; otherwise where was Nigeria Labour Congress on the matter of Bakassi? Why did NLC not go on strike to force the hand of Aso Rock? It is so sad it should be investigated by the national house of representatives. May be a treasonable felony was committed by this handover calling for impeachment proceedings against the sickly Umaru Yar'Adua! Icheoku says, to hell with him and all the cabals that he represents for cowering before Cameroon over Bakassi!


Anonymous said...

Nigeria cedes Bakassi to Cameroon

Thousands of people have moved from their homes in Bakassi
Nigeria has handed over the potentially oil-rich Bakassi peninsula to Cameroon, bringing an end to a long-standing dispute over the territory.

The handover ceremony was moved from the peninsula's main town to Calabar in Nigeria amid security concerns.

Over the past year about 50 people have been killed in clashes.

The majority of the local population considers itself Nigerian, but an international court ruled in favour of Cameroon in 2002.

The BBC's Abdullahi Kaura in Calabar says there are unconfirmed reports that militants have attacked a boat travelling to Abana, the main town on the Bakassi peninsula.

Unresolved pain at Bakassi handover

In pictures

Nigerian security sources said between three and seven people were killed when militants ambushed the boat as it made its way from Cameroon.

Correspondents say security had been beefed up ahead of the ceremony.

On the Cameroonian side, there have been celebrations as people moved back into the peninsula.

In recent years, at least 100,000 people have moved from the peninsula to Nigeria, local leaders say.

The International Court of Justice ruling was based on an early 19th century colonial agreement between Britain and Germany.

Nigeria challenged the ruling, but finally agreed to relinquish the territory two years ago.

"The gains made in adhering to the rule of law may outweigh the painful losses of ancestral homes," said the head of the Nigerian delegation at the ceremony, Attorney General Mike Aondoakaa.

Part of the territory was handed over to Cameroon two years ago.


A spokesman for Nigerian President Umaru Yar'Adua said the process was "painful... for everyone including the president", but added that Nigeria had made "a commitment to the international community and we have a responsibility to keep it".

Bakassi plan stirs tensions

Cameroon said the final handover would mark "the end of a crisis".

On the beaches of the northern part of the island there were parties and celebrations as Cameroonians prepared to go into the last section to be turned over to them.

"We are going straight to the place, and we're going to be happy," one reveller told the BBC's Randy Joe Sa'ah in Bakassi.

But in Nigeria there is still bitterness about the deal.

"The government has abandoned its duties," said Kayode Fasitere, the lawyer acting for some displaced from Bakassi who sought to have the handover delayed.

The transfer of Bakassi had been described by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon as "a model for negotiated settlements of border disputes".

A group of Bakassi leaders have been seeking compensation from the Nigerian government.

About 90% of the area's population, estimated at up to 300,000, is made up of Nigerian fishermen.

About 30,000 of the residents have moved out to an area in Cross Rivers State set aside for them, but it has no access to the sea, campaigners say.

Bakassi has a rich fishing culture and people say the handover has destroyed their way of life.

The Bakassi peninsula juts out into the Gulf of Guinea close to the Niger Delta.

Its offshore waters are thought to contain substantial oil fields - untapped because of the border dispute - which Nigeria and Cameroon will now work together to explore.

Anonymous said...

Yar’Adua disappointed Nigerians — Reps
By John Ameh, Abuja
Published: Friday, 15 Aug 2008
Angry reactions trailed the handover of the Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroun at the House of Representatives on Thursday.

Skip to next paragraph

President Umaru Yar‘Adua

The spokesman of the House, Mr. Ezeuiche Ubani, said that President Umaru Yar’Adua had disappointed Nigerians, citing the breach of the 1999 Constitution and the failure to get the approval of the National Assembly before effecting the handover, to back up his claim.

Ubani, who was the Chairman of the House Committee on Media and Public Affairs until July 31, noted that Nigerians were bitter over the “arrogance” displayed by the Federal Government on the Bakassi issue.

Speaking at the National Assembly in Abuja, Ubani observed that Yar’Adua had the wrong impression that playing the ‘good boy’ before the international community would be rewarded.

According to him, no country ever willingly cedes a part of its territory to another, moreso in the case of Nigeria where the legal and security implications have not been resolved.

He said, “The government did not need to prove anything to anybody by handing over Bakassi to Cameroun.

“Then the glee with which it was done; there is some bit of arrogance about it. The President telling the citizens that there is no going back.

“The citizens whose sources of livelihood had been disrupted, people displaced with no alternative arrangements for them to settle and you say there is no going back; to be able to impress whom?”

The lawmaker expressed concern that the Federal Government had not taken stock of the “strategic loss that will accrue to Nigeria from this action”, coming at a time when its military high command kicked against the handover.

He said, “The military high command is against the handover of Bakassi and they are coming out to say so; they are just being political and diplomatic about it.

“What they (Nigerian military) have said so far show that they are not in support of the action.

“If the Chief of Defence Staff could come out to tell the Senate Committee that they were never consulted; I mean that is something for the President to have listened to.”

Ubani further stated that the world would not come to an end if the status quo on Bakassi was maintained, citing the case of Morocco and Spain that had a long-standing dispute over a piece of rock in spite of several court rulings.

He said, “There is nothing strange about Nigeria and Cameroun claiming that place forever; since Nigerians are firmly established there, there is nothing wrong in asking them to remain there.

“So, the decision of the International Court of Justice, which has not been ratified by the National Assembly, is a violation of the Nigerian constitution.”

He also disagreed with the Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr. Michael Aondookaa (SAN), over his claim that under the Green Tree Agreement, Nigerians could live freely in Cameroun without being molested or being asked to pay tax.

Anonymous said...

Camerounians celebrate as Nigeria cedes Bakassi
By Chukwudi Akasike, Uyo
Published: Friday, 15 Aug 2008
“We are going straight to the place, and we’re going to be happy.”

Skip to next paragraph

L–R: Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Mr. Michael Aondoakaa, Camerounian Deputy Prime Minister, Mr. Ahmodou Alli; Acting Governor of Cross River State, Mr. Francis Adah; and the Camerounian Minister of State for Justice, Prof. Maurice Kamto, after signing the agreement ceding Bakassi to Cameroun in Calabar... on Thursday. AFP

These were the words of a Camerounian reveller, a few minutes after Nigeria formally handed over the oil-rich Bakassi Peninsula to his country on Thursday.

The reveller whose name was not given by the British Broadcasting Corporation was one of the scores of Camerounians who celebrated the transfer on the beaches of the northern part of the peninsula.

But in Abuja and Calabar, the House of Representatives, like many Nigerians, expressed bitterness over the ceding of the territory.

“The government has abandoned its duties,” said Kayode Fasitere, the lawyer acting for some displaced Bakassi people who secured an interim order from a Federal High Court in Abuja halting the exercise.

The Federal Government ignored the court order.

The Leader of the Nigerian delegation to the Follow-up Committee and the Minister of Justice, Mr. Michael Aondoakaa (SAN), effected the handover to the Camerounian Minister of State for Justice, Prof. Maurice Kamto, not in Abana, the headquaters of the Bakassi Local Government Area, but in Calabar.

It was learnt that the change of venue from Abana to Calabar, Cross River State, was to avoid security upheavals as militant groups were alleged to have positioned themselves in the creeks purportedly in readiness to distrupt the ceremony. Even in Calabar, security operatives restricted movement towards the venue of the event.

The United Nations, the United States, France and Britain sent representatives to witness the ceremony which highlight was the exchange of Nigerian and Camerounian flags by Aondoakaa and Kamto.

All the parties involved in the handover also signed documents to signify the final cession of Bakassi to Cameroun.

Nigeria began the gradual ceding of the border territory to Cameroun in May 2004 with the transfer of 33 fishing villages along the Gamboru-Ngala axis to the north of the border between the two countries.

The International Court of Justice at The Hague, The Netherlands, finally ruled on October 10, 2002 that Cameroun should possess the peninsula. It based its decision on a 1913 treaty between former colonial masters, Germany and Britain.

The resource-rich Bakassi peninsula, and the 1,600-kilometre long border area between Cameroun and Nigeria, extends from Lake Chad to the Gulf of Guinea.

Before both parties signed the documents, Aondoakaa described the handover as a milestone in Nigeria‘s history.

He said although the exercise was painful, Nigerians had a responsibility to keep their commitment to the international community, promote international peace and advance African brotherhood.

He said, ”We are saddled with the painful but important task of completing the implementation of the ICJ judgment by handing over Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroun.

”As painful as it is, we have a responsibility to keep our commitment to the international community, promote international peace and co-operation and advance the course of African brotherhood and neighbourliness.

“Most importantly, this is President Umaru Yar‘Adua‘s practical demonstration of his administration‘s total commitment to the rule of law. It is his sincere belief that if African leaders believe and adhere totally to the rule of law, peace will reign on this continent.”

Explaining that the gain of ceding the peninsula would at the end outweigh the losses in the territory, Aondoakaa assured the people of Bakassi of Federal Government‘s interest in their welfare.

The minister added that government had taken various measures to address their concerns, which he said, included sincere arrangement for the resettlement of Nigerians who had chosen to remain in Bakassi as citizens of Cameroun.

He said, ”Our government appreciates the fact that this handover will certainly generate some socio-economic and political fallout.

“To manage these peculiar circumstances, government soon after the judgment, enacted the Border Communities Development Agency Act of 2003 and amended same in 2006 to meet the expectations of the current challenges.”

Responding, the Leader of the Camerounian delegation to the Follow-up Committee, Kamto, said the ceremony was a “historic moment, showing brotherly celebration of co-operation between the two countries.”

He expressed delight that both countries respected the ICJ verdict and the Green Tree Agreement.

Kamto assured Bakassi indigenes who decided to stay back in the peninsula that the Camerounian government would take care of their welfare.

The Chairman of the United Nations-backed Follow-up Committee on Bakassi, Kiren Prendergast, said, “We in the UN are happy about the handover. What is important is that the handover is done at last.”

The Chairman, Cameroun-Nigeria Mixed Commission, Mr. Said Djinnit, who also spoke at the ceremony, explained that the venue of the handover was not important.

Djinnit, who did not give reasons for the change of venue, said there were good reasons for the event to be held in Calabar.

”The most important thing is that the ceremony took place on the scheduled date and a more appropriate place. There are good reasons for the handover ceremony to take place here (Calabar),” he said.

Djinnit stressed that the United Nations would not only do its “utmost best to encourage peace between Nigeria and Cameroun, it would support both countries to address the legitimate concerns of those affected by the handover.”

Anonymous said...

Bakassi Handover, A Betrayal Of Trust -NANS
By Olisemeka Obeche, Reporter, Lagos
National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS)on Thursday described the handing over of the Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroon on Thursday by the Federal Government against the wish of the people of the area and the majority of Nigerians as a betrayal of trust and violation of the fundamental human rights of the citizens.

NANS also stated that the insistence of the Federal Government in obeying the ruling of the International Court of Justice (ICJ)against the interest of Nigerians has exposed government's hypocrisy and total disregard to the welfare of its citizens.

National President of NANS, Bashir Babaale, made the position of the Nigerian students known to Daily Independent in a telephone interview shortly after the hand-over ceremony.

He warned government against continued neglect of the interest of its citizens, especially the youth to avoid setting the country ablaze.

"It is high time our government take us and our views on matters concerning us very seriously.

"How can the government take such action when they know that it is totally against the interest of the people?

"The Bakassi hand-over is a case of government trampling upon the fundamental rights of its citizens in a desperate effort to please the international community.

"That the action was illegal and unconstitutional revealed the neo-colonial character of federal government; it has also exposed the hypocrisy and dishonesty of the government over avowed commitment to the rule of law."

Babaale argued that the decision of the ICJ was not in the best interest of Nigeria and but wondered why the Federal Government went ahead to implement it with "such desperation even against the hues and cries from the entire citizenry."

"The ruling was more political than legal; its implementation is also a subject of vested interest.

"A treaty ceding a territory is not what one man or any President can single-handedly do and be allowed to stand. The willingness of the government to cede the region exposes the hypocrisy and dishonesty of Yar'Adua's government and smacks of suspicion," he added.

Anonymous said...

Sunset on Bakassi
Friday, August 15, 2008

Photo: Sun News Publishing

More Stories on This Section

The sun finally set on Nigeria’s loss of Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroon yesterday afternoon at the Governor’s Lodge, Calabar, Cross River State as representatives of both countries signed the hand-over instrument and exchanged flags.

It was a very emotional moment which stamped paid to all the diplomatic speeches earlier made and President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua resolve to obey the ruling of the International Court of Justice ceding the peninsula to Cameroon.

More than a few people who witnessed the event which was delayed because some principal officers involved in the transfer arrived late could still not come to terms with the reality of the loss.

Forlorn looks were apparent on many faces including that of Senator Florence Ita-Giwa, Former Special Adviser to Former President Olusegun Obasanjo who signed the oil – rich Bakassi Peninsula away. Ita-Giwa, a princess from the ceded area wiped her face profusely with her white handkerchief as though she was not in an air – condition venue. The Paramount Ruler of Bakassi Local Government Area, Etinyin Etim Okon Edet who had earlier vowed not to witness the hand-over sat next to her but maintained a mean stoicism throughout the proceedings.
The emotive atmosphere was further made funeral–like as both Nigerian and Cameroonian National Anthems were twice played in quick succession as though both countries were engaged in a football match.

On Wednesday, many people had thought that the mournful event would take place at Abana, Headquarters of the ceded Local Government Area. There was heavy military presence in Calabar Municipality and accreditation of journalists who had swam like bees into Calabar to cover the event took the whole day and lasted beyond midnight.
At about 8.30am yesterday (Thursday), news filtered to journalists that the ceremony would no longer take place at Bakassi but in Calabar. Swiftly, movement changed, but again, at the gate leading to the Governor’s Lodge, the security operatives stationed there re-screened the already accredited journalists and many were barred from entry.

Bomb detectors were used inside the venue to ascertain the safety of the venue while movement across the hall was highly restricted. The ceremony was watched by many dignitaries from various countries including France, Germany, the UK, the US, Ireland, Cameroon and Nigeria under the watchful eyes of delegates from the United Nations.

The Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General for West Africa and Chairman, Cameroon – Nigeria Mixed Commission, Ambassador Said Djinnit gave the opening speech, followed by the Acting Governor of Cross River State, Rt. Hon. Francis Adah, who reminded both Cameroon and the Bakassians that the judgment has provisions for the protection of Bakassians if they chose to stay back to maintain their heritage.

The leader of the Nigerian delegation to the follow-up committee, Hon. Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Michael Kaase Aondoakaa who was accompanied to the event with Minister of Interior, Gen. Godwin Abbe (rtd), and Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, also made his speech after which the leader of the Cameroonian delegation to the Follow-up Committee, Hon. Minister of State for Justice, Prof. Maurice Kamto, followed suit.

The Chairman of the Follow-up Committee, Sir Kiren Prendergast, summed up the peaceful hand-over as a model for other African countries with boundary disputes to emulate.
Back at the refugee camps in the new Bakassi Local Government Area, it is a compendium of tales of suffering, neglect, want and protest. At Ikang, the land boundary to the deep waters of Bakassi, the youths are literary mad that their land has been sold to Cameroon. While some ignorantly say Ojukwu sold the peninsula to Cameroon, in an apparent reference to Gen. Yakubu Gowon’s civil war treaty with Cameroon’s President Ahmadu Ahidjo, others are begging for government’s assistance even though they are on the Ikang side which is still legally in Nigeria.
Different security operatives including the Immigration, Army Intelligence and the State Security Service, all clad in mufti wander about at Ikang in different guises but may have been deployed there on government order.

The Nigerian Army base at Ikang is now a shadow of itself. The civilian jetty built by the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) is without activities.
A few locals roam the jetty and its environs like orphans not sure of tomorrow. One thing however has come to stay as a truth: The sun has set on Bakassi and it is now a Cameroonian territory.

Anonymous said...

...Adegbite, Rep knock FG
By GABRIEL DIKE, Osogbo and JAMES OJO, Abuja
Friday, August 15, 2008

More Stories on This Section

Less than 24 hours after the ceding of Bakassi to the Camerounian Government by the Yar’Adua’s administration, the Federal Government once again came under attack as the Secretary General of Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Dr Abdul-Lateef Adegbite decried the decision.

His words: “I am surprised the federal government ignored a High Court without appealing the judgment at the Court of Appeal to set aside the lower court judgment. I would have expected the federal government to wait for the decision on the appeal before surrendering part of Nigeria to the Camerounian.”

Adegbite who is also the Baba Adinni of Egbaland disclosed that not much would have been wasted if the federal government had waited for six months to study the High Court judgment and other related issues on the disputed Peninsula before rushing to cede Bakassi to Cameroun.

The NSCIA scribe also faulted the ratification process by the National Assembly saying the lawmakers acted after the deed had been done even when there was a court judgment on the case.
Also former spokesman of the House of Representatives, Hon Ubani Ezeuiche has slammed the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Michael Aondoakaa and carpeted President Umar Musa Yar’Adua on the handing over of Bakassi Peninsula.

Ubani described as absolute rubbish, Aondoakaa’s defence that the people of Bakassi could remain in Bakassi and still carry out their normal activities without paying taxes.
Ubani said that the action of the federal government on the cessation showed that President Yar’Adua took Nigerians for granted, when he decided to ignore the National Assembly’s stand on Bakassi issues. He noted that it was a clear violation of the constitution he swore to defend and uphold.

Taking the minister to the cleaners, Ubani said “The minister is talking rubbish, absolute rubbish, what kind of Attorney General is that? How can he say that they will stay in Cameroun without paying tax? What kind of country is governed like that? He asked. Ubani said that it was like the Minister did not read history well to know that “even when Bakassi was still in Nigeria, Cameroonian Gendarmes always went there to harass them and collect tax from them, not to talk of now that they are ceded to Cameroun.

“Most Nigerians believed that the action of the government is wrong, there is a link between Nigeria and Cameroun. This government has nothing to prove to Nigerians, it only showed that they have no listening ears.
“It is annoying and disappointing to have handed over Bakassi by the federal government in flagrant disobedience to the clarion calls by Nigerians not to obey the International Court ruling on Bakassi,” he posited.

According to him, “No country has ever ceded its country, no country has ever obeyed the International Court ruling, we do not know whom they are trying to impress.”
“There is example, for a very long time Morocco and Mauritanian and it has not been resolved. It is a violation of the Nigeria law, whom we are trying to impress, what the minister is saying it absolute rubbish,” he added.

He said that it was unfortunate that the Federal Government refused to listen to the advice of the military high command about the action taken by the government of Obasanjo on the handing over of Bakassi, as revealed before the Senate by the Chief of Defence Staff.

As a result of growing disquiet over the ceding, Ubani noted that the last is yet to be heard.
“We need to also warn that we may not have heard the last about this matter. The Niger Delta people are now beginning to link that to the crisis we have there. The same thing we are talking about. These people in Niger Delta say they are not accepting it. The attack Nigeria has been having from the militants, I think nobody should be surprised if they intensify and continue.

“It is possible that the whole Niger Delta might erupt, that is why I say we have not heard the last of this,” he said.
He noted that National Assembly members too could shared from the blame because originally it ought to have stopped the federal government from going ahead with the ceding.

Anonymous said...

Bye Bye, Bakassi...
From Sufuyan Ojeifo in Abuja, 08.14.2008

Add To Favorites
Print This Article
Post Comment

Today’s handover of the disputed Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroon promises to be a mixed grill of pain and pleasure. Pain for the Nigerian authorities, who are handing over a territory they had seen as part of their country for many years, and for the indigenes of Bakassi who are finally turning their backs on a land they had long seen as theirs.
And pleasure for Cameroon which is receiving a territory rich in oil and gas.
But ahead of the handover, the Senate said yesterday that the transfer of the peninsula to Cameroon might just be a symbolic way of kick-starting the process of domesticating the Green Tree Treaty (GTA), which officially ceded the territory to Cameroon.
The Senate said the process of the ratification of the treaty was still on.
The handover is coming as the Joint Senate Committees of Foreign Affairs; Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters; and State and Local Government Administration, acting as an ad-hoc committee, saddled with the responsibility of reviewing the GTA and recommending appropriate legislative actions to the Senate were yet to conclude the assignment.
Speaking on the issue yesterday, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Media and Information, Senator Ayogu Eze, said, “One other point that people have spoken about is the issue of the treaty and its domestication, well processes like from experience is not something that can be concluded in a day.
“The hand over, for instance, is just a process. Tomorrow (Today) might just be a symbolic way of starting the process of hand over, because when you hand over, you have to take care of creating or re-naming or re-creating the Bakassi Local Government as enshrined in the Third schedule of the constitution.”
He stated, in defence of the decision by the Senate not to discuss the issue in closed session yesterday (the eve of the handover), that, “The Senate, in its wisdom, has already done quite a lot of work on the Bakassi issue. You know that we have a joint committee that has been working on it and it would be over flogging the issue for us to come to floor today (yesterday) and start talking about it.”
He said the Senate position was that the Bakassi issue was a very delicate one which should be handled with a lot of caution.
According to him, “A lot of issues are involved. We have to choose between being the bad boy of the International Community and reneging on the process of hand over. We believe that there is a whole lot of things the government can still do.
“We can still, even after being seen to abide by the law, enter into some form of negotiation, because we have already been assured despite lots investigation, that, that part of Bakassi is not really very heavy with mineral deposit as alleged.”
He said the issues were the welfare of the people who were being displaced, stressing that the Senate would want to know if government had done enough to relocate the people and cushion their suffering.
He added: “The other issue is the egress and ingress of our Navy in the waterways in the course of doing their duties of protecting Nigeria; and, of course, the Green Tree Agreement also spelt out those areas that on no account should Cameroon constitute an impediment to Nigeria’s military authorities or our military personnel having access or exit from the Bakassi waters into the Nigerian territorial waters, because that actually is the major security issue that has been raised.”
Eze maintained that the treaty domestication and ratification would be handled by the National Assembly, pointing out that this process was already on.
“Therefore, the handover of Bakassi cannot be said to have been concluded without the treaty domestication and ratification by the National Assembly,” he said.

Anonymous said...

The Green Tree Agreement
The agreement was signed in New York on June 12, 2006.

Add To Favorites
Print This Article
Post Comment

The Republic of Cameroon (hereinafter referred to as “Cameroon”) and the Federal Republic of Nigeria (hereinafter referred to as “Nigeria”).
Reaffirming their willingness to peacefully implement the judgment of the International Court of Justice,
Commending the secretary-general of the United Nations for his efforts made in this respect in organising the tripartite summits and establishing the Cameroon-Nigeria Mixed Commission,
Considering that the question of the withdrawal from and transfer of authority over the Bakassi Peninsula should be treated in a forward-looking spirit of goodwill in order to open new prospects for cooperation between the two countries after decades of difficult bilateral relations,
Determined to encourage the consolidation of confidence and peace between their two countries for the well-being of their peoples and for stability in the sub region,
Have decided to conclude the present agreement.

Article 1
Nigeria recognises the sovereignty of Cameroon over the Bakassi Peninsula in accordance with the judgment of the International Court of Justice of 10 October 2002 in the matter of land and maritime boundary between Cameroon and Nigeria. Cameroon and Nigeria recognise the land and maritime boundary between the two countries as delineated by the court and commit themselves to continuing the process of implementation already begun.

Article 2
Nigeria agrees to withdraw all its armed forces from the Bakassi Peninsula within sixty days of the date of the signing of this agreement. If exceptional circumstances so require, the secretary-general of the United Nations may extend the period, as necessary, for a further period not exceeding a total of thirty days. This withdrawal shall be conducted in accordance with the modalities envisaged in annex 1 to this agreement.

Article 3
1. Cameroon, after the transfer of authority to it by Nigeria, guarantees to Nigerian nationals living in the Bakassi Peninsula the exercise of the fundamental rights and freedoms enshrined in international human rights law and in other relevant provisions of international law.

2. In particular, Cameroon shall:
(a) not force Nigerian nationals living in the Bakassi Peninsula to leave the zone or to change their nationality;
(b) respect their culture, language and beliefs;
(c) respect their right to continue their agricultural and fishing activities;
(d) protect their property and their customary land rights;
(e) not levy in any discriminatory manner any taxes and other dues on Nigerian nationals living in the zone; and
(f) take every necessary measure to protect Nigerian nationals living in the zone from any harassment or harm.

Article 4
Annex I and the map contained in Annex II to this agreement shall constitute an integral part thereof.
No part of this agreement shall be interpreted as a renunciation by Cameroon of its sovereignty over any part of its territory.

Article 5
This agreement shall be implemented in good faith by the parties, with the good offices of the secretary-general of the United Nations, if necessary, and shall be witnessed by the United Nations, the Federal Republic of Germany, the French Republic, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the United States of America.

Article 6
1. A follow-up committee to monitor the implementation of this agreement is hereby established. It shall be composed of representatives of Cameroon, Nigeria, the United Nations and the witness states. The committees shall monitor the implementation of the agreement by the parties with the assistance of the United Nations observers of the Mixed Commission.
2. The follow-up committee shall settle any dispute regarding the interpretation and implementation of this agreement.
3. The activities of the follow-up committee shall cease at the end of the period of the special transitional regime provided for in paragraph 4 of annex I to this agreement.

Article 7
This agreement shall in no way be construed as an interpretation or modification of the judgment of the International Court of Justice of 10 October 2002, for which the agreement only sets out the modalities of implementation.

Article 8
This agreement is concluded in English and French, both texts being equally authentic.
Done at Greentree, New York, on 12 June 2006
• For the Republic of Cameroon: Paul Biya, President
• For the Federal Republic of Nigeria: Olusegun Obasanjo, President
• For the United Nations: Kofi Ata Annan
• For the Federal Republic of Germany: H.E. Gunter Pleuger
• For the United States of America: H.E. Fakie Sanders
• For the French Republic: H.E. Michel Duclos
• For the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland — H.E. Koren Pierce

Anonymous said...

Bakassi:Bakassi: The genesis, the verdict
Written by Victor Omoregie with agency reports
Friday, 15 August 2008
The judgement delivered by Justice Gilbert Guillanme, President of the International Court of Justice in Hague on the 10th of October 2002 was the culmination of a flurry of legal battles that had lasted over eight years.
The conflict began in 1994 over the oil-rich 1000-square land called Bakassi. In 1913 there was a colonial agreement between German colonial master who were overseeing northern Cameroon and Britain who were running the southern cameroon. It was agreed that Britain hand over its territories to the Germans, and this included Bakassi.

The Bakassi issue has been lingering since the era of Gen. Yakubu Gowon until th verdict of the ICJ at the Hague on October 10, 2002. It is worthy to note that governments of Alhaji Shehu Shagari, Buhari/Idiagbon, IBB, Abacha to Obasanjo, have all been members of the relay team that lost out to Cameroon.

GOWON ERA—The Bakassi issue became noticeable during the Shehu Shagari era, when it was advised to look into the status of the Maroua Declaration of June 1st 1995, which Gen. Gowon signed with President Ahmadu Ahidjo of Cameroon.

The meetings held in Maroua from May 30 to June 1 allegedly led to conceding of the sovereignty of Bakassi to Cameroon. Chief Richard Akinjide, who at then the Attorney-General of the federation sort the assistance of one Dr. Geoffrey Marston, a lecturer of law at the Cambridge University in England, to do research and write an opinion for government on the Bakassi issue.

Unfortunately, the Marston report of May 1982 omitted a vital point of the Maroua declaration, that it was the agreement between Gen. Gowon and President Ahidjo, by which Gen. Gowon was alleged to have given substantial territorial concerns to cameroon. Gen. Gowon was alleged to have done as a gesture of gratitude for the support Cameroon gave to Nigeria during the Nigeria/Biafra civil war.

Cameroon did not allow war materials to filtrate through Cameroon to Biafrans in Eastern Nigeria. By the agreement, Gen. Gowon was alleged to have agreed with President Ahidjo to extend the delimitation of the maritime boundary between the two countries from point 12 to point “G” on the British Admiralty Chart No. 3433, which was attached to Maroua. Another meeting was held in Kano in 1974 at which Nigeria succeeded in marginally shifting the boundary to the east of Ngoh/Coker line, but had to concede the presence of Cameroon oil rigs in the Calabar channel

MURTALA ERA—-When Gen. Murtala Mohammed became Head of State, he denounced the Maroua Agreement and questioned its validity on the basis that it was not ratified by the Supreme Military Council, which stood in place of the Nigerian legislature and which consent under the then existing constitution was necessary for a treaty or agreement of that nature between Nigeria and a foreign state to be valid.

BUHARI/IDIAGBON ERA—When the Buhari/Idiagbon regime came on board, they instituted a review of the Marston Report. The report stated that Nigeria should never allow the matter to go to court but that government should settle for arbitration, because of its give and take attributes as opposed to court litigation.

BABANGIDA ERA— The IBB regime set up a Legal Task Force to look into the Bakassi issue. Visits were made to France, Germany, US, UK and any other place that government could place her hands on historical archives and documents, that could throw light on the issue.

The report advocated dialogue and negotiation, coupled with intense diplomatic moves through bilateral talks to see whether the issue could be resolved amicably. Of all the regimes that have been involved in the Bakassi Peninsula issue, the IBB government showed the greatest concern about the need to resolve the matter between Nigeria and the Cameroon.

This line of action was preferable so as to be seen as having an overbearing attitude as a bigger brother. It was hoped that a decision might be reached where Cameroon would agree to a partition of Bakassi in which case Nigeria will take the West and Cameroon the East, with the Rio del Rey acting as a boundary. In the alternative, Cameroon should agree to a joint administration of the territory.

ABACHA ERA— Immediately General Abacha took over power, Cameroon took Nigeria to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) at the Hague. At another breadth, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria had sent a confidential letter to Gen. Abacha in which he expressed the view that Nigeria’s case was a very bad one. Characteristic with the Abacha government, it turn down the advise, saying the High Commissioner’s letter was provocative and that Nigeria was prepared to go to war over the Bakassi issue.

However Gen. Abacha gave directives that select team of International Lawyers should be put together to tackle the Bakassi issue. The team had Prof. Itse Sagay, a renowned international lawyer, Prof. Oye Chukwurah, a boundary expert and Prof Ayo Ojomo. From Britain came Prof. Ian Brownlie, Whell Professor of International Law at the University of Cambridge, Prof. Crawford of Oxford University, Prof. Derek Bowett, former President of Queens in Cambridge and Prof. Rosalyn Higgins of the London School of Economics and Political Science fame, who at that time representing Britain at the ICJ. The services of D.J. Freeman, the traditional solicitors of the Federal Government and one of the leading firms of solicitors in London.

The team made its first appearance at the court in Hague on Tuesday June 14, 1994 in response to the action filed by Cameroon against the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The Registrar of the Court, Mr. Eduado Valencia Ospina, later explained that in any litigation before the court, the Attorney-General of the country is always the agent for the case while the co-agent is always the Ambassador of that country accredited to the Hague.

This tradition dates back to the inception of the court’s predecessor, the Permanent Court of International Justice (PCIJ) in 19922. Government intrigue however derailed the entire efforts of the legal team and Ambassador Bindawa was removed as the country’s representative in Hague. After this infraction, Prof Sagay withdrew his services.

From then on the case took another dimension with all sorts of person heading to Hague to represent the country. It is on record that by the ABDULSALAMI ERA— It was an extension of the jamboree by all sorts to Hague in the guise of defending the country.

OBASANJO ERA— When Obasanjo took over, the case had gone on for years. Obasanjo held a series of meeting in New York, Geneva and Paris with Mr. Paul Biya, President of Cameroon. At one of the meetings, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Koffi Anan was present to discuss the aftermath of the ICJ ruling.

The meetings were a continuation of efforts aimed at reaching an amicable understanding on the Bakassi Peninsulas. Obasanjo was accompanied to the meeting by Donald Duke, Cross River State Governor, Minister of Foreign Affairs, ambassador Olu Adeniji, Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Chief Bayo Ojo (SAN) and his Special Adviser on National Assembly Affairs, Senator Florence Ita-Giwa.

A consummate researcher, Samson Doe, who had dual citizenship of Nigeria and Cameroon, devised a strategy to put a new dimension to the case. He had been working silently on Southern Cameroon case against (the French) Cameroon and had amassed a lot of literature.

Anonymous said...

Bakassi: It's mourning time
Written by George Onah, John Ighodaro, Ben Agande & Kolade Larewaju
Friday, 15 August 2008
AS the Federal Government finally surrendered Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroun authority yesterday, six years after the International Court of Justice ruled in favour of that country, Bakassi natives and their kins in Cross River State continued with their 14-day mourning, which they declared eight days ago, for what they termed “the loss of Bakassi.”
The mood was aptly captured by the candidate of the All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP) in the governorship election re-run slated for August 23, Dr. Paul Ekpo, when he said: “We would not have much time to campaign for the election as we are in a mourning period because of the loss of Bakassi.”

According to him, “we had a seven-day mourning period before the handover and we will have another seven-day mourning period after today’s handover.”

Even the paramount ruler of Bakassi, Etim Okon Edet, who seems to have resigned to fate said he wished efforts were made much earlier to fix the relocation site for the natives.
According to him, “although some of the buildings have been completed, one would have expected that the entire project would have been completed by now.”

Handover painful — FG

At yesterday’s final withdrawal of Nigerian civil administration and transfer of authority in the Bakassi Peninsula, the Attorney-General of Nigeria and Minister of Justice, Chief Michael Aondoakaa (SAN), said the day marked “a great milestone in the history of our nation.

As painful as it is, we have a responsibility to keep our commitment to the international community, promote international peace and cooperation and advance the cause of African brotherhood and good neighbourliness.

“The gains of this action which are in pursuit of international peace, good neighbourliness and rule of law, may in the final analysis, outweigh the painful losses in territory, ancestral homes and other emotions too numerous to mention,” he said.

Proof of respect for International commitments —Cameroun

His Camerounian counterpart, Dr. Maurice Kamto, described the ceremony as “equally proof to the world of the ability of our two countries to respect their international commitments.

In this commitment, Cameroun reiterates her determination to abide by her commitments taken within the framework of the Green Tree Agreement, as concerns the special transitional regime applied to the zone for a non renewable period of five years.”

He noted that what the Camerounian President Paul Biya had achieved “with his successive Nigerian counterpart and with the assistance of the successive Secretary-General of the United Nations deserves, I , believe, to be hailed by both peoples and acknowledged by the international community.

We have no doubt that other voices will join ours to exalt this exemplary success,” he added.

Speaking in the same vein, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for West Africa and Chairman, Cameroun-Nigeria Mixed Commission, Ambassador Said Djinnit, said: “I am deeply honoured to be part of this historic achievement, a true triumph of international law here on the continent.

Neighbourly cooperation and the brotherly approach of the two parties have been fundamental in realising a peaceful culmination of the transition in Bakassi. This ceremony marks yet another milestone in the cooperation between Cameroun and Nigeria.”

Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Ban Ki-Moon, lauded the efforts of all stakeholders that led to the final implementation of the Green Tree Agreement.

Represented by Chairman of the Follow-Up Committee, Sir Kieran Prendergast, the UN scribe said: “For the United Nations, the Green Tree Agreement was also the embodiment of an innovative approach to conflict resolution. Beginning with the withdrawal of Nigerian troops from Bakassi two years ago and culminating in this ceremony, the case of the Bakassi Peninsula has proven the viability of a peaceful and legal settlement of border disputes, when it is done with the full support of the international community and in the spirit of mutual respect, good neighbourliness and cooperation.”

C-River Ag Gov reminds Nigerians in Bakassi of their rights

In his welcome address at the ceremony, Acting Governor of Cross River State, Rt.Hon. Francis Adah said: “Permit me at this point, to draw attention to the Green Tree Agreement which spelt out modalities for the transfer of Bakassi to Cameroun.

“Among other things, the agreement provides that Nigerians are free to remain in the peninsula if they choose to do so, even after its transfer to Cameroun.

“Specifically, Article 3 of the Agreement provides that Cameroun shall: (a) not force Nigerian nationals living in Bakassi Peninsula to leave the zone or to change their nationality; b) respect their culture, language and beliefs; c) respect their right to continue their agricultural and fishing activities; d) protect their property and their customary rights; e) not levy in any discriminatory manner any taxes and other dues on Nigerians living in the zone; and f) take every necessary measures to protect Nigerian national living in the zone from any harassment or harm.”

He also had a word for Nigerian nationals who have chosen to remain in Cameroun. He said: “We call on Nigerian nationals who have chosen to remain in Bakassi to be conscious of these rights, even as the Federal Government of Nigeria continues to ensure that the rights of these Nigerians are not abused.”

He also appealed to the international community to assist in the rehabilitation of Bakassi natives who have elected to resettle in Nigeria.

According to him, "let me equally say here that the task of resettling the displaced people of Bakassi who have chosen to move away from the area in their determination to remain part of their fatherland, is indeed enormous. Their needs which go far beyond shelter, food and security also require a rehabilitation of their entire lives which have been traumatized in many ways.

“This is where the international community also has a big role to play, not only in assisting with the provision of funds, but by helping in other ways to re-assure the displaced people that they remain accepted members of the world community. Even with the support of the Federal Government we cannot do too much for these people who have to start their lives anew for no fault of theirs,” he said.

The Bakassi delegation to the handover ceremony was led by the Bakassi Paramount Ruler, H.R.H. Etim Okon Edet, accompanied by Sen. Ita Giwa and other Bakassi chiefs.

Among those in the Camerounian delegation were the American Deputy Ambassador to Cameroun, Mr. Steven Fox; and the Defence Attache in the American Embassy in Younde, Cameroun, Lt. Col. Matthew Souza, who was in military fatigue.The delegation also had Mr. Ousman Mey and Gen. Tataw James.

FG directs 4 states to set up monitoring c'ttees

Meanwhile, the National Economic Council, yesterday, directed four states—Imo, Cross River, Rivers and Bayelsa – to set up a monitoring committee to oversee a possible influx of displaced Nigerians from the Bakassi peninsula into their states and report to the Federal Government for prompt action.

Addressing State House correspondents after yesterday’s meeting, Governor Babangida Aliyu of Niger State said although some actions had been taken to ameliorate the sufferings of the people from the region, government did not want to take chances and wanted to ensure that the interest of the people was taken care of.

Aliyu who was supported by the governors of Oyo and Imo states and the Minister of National Planning, Senator Sanusi Daggash, said the council also set up a committee with representatives each from the six geo-political zones to look into the national gas policy.

Speaking on the displaced people of Bakassi, Governor Muazu said: “One of the key issues and I know one of the most interesting issues to most people is the issue of Bakassi. We looked at the issues and we noted what has been done and all the states that might likely have problems because of movement of people and we told them to monitor the situation.

The states include Imo, Bayelsa, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, and Rivers. They have all started doing so many things but at least they have been alerted further today (yesterday) so that we will be able to do what we can to alleviate the suffering of those who will be moving from Bakassi.

We are more concern about the human angle and these particular governors have been mandated to go the extra mile extra to ensure that the sufferings are alleviated.”

Soyinka faults FG

However,Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, yesterday in Abeokuta criticised the Federal Government for not consulting the people on the Bakassi Peninsula.

“My position has always been why were the people of Bakassi not consulted? A piece of territory is nothing except peopled and cultivated. My feeling is that from the beginning, the case should not have gone to international court. I think some mechanism of the United Nations should have found out the views of the people.

“But since both sides have submitted themselves for adjudication for an international body, what are we arguing about? Both sides agree to go there for international arbitration so we cannot start moving goalpost after the goal has been scored,” he said.

Anonymous said...

How to regain Bakassi from Cameroon -Lawyer
By SEYE OJO, Ibadan
Monday, August 18, 2008

Photo: Sun News Publishing
More Stories on This Section

A legal luminary, Chief Adeniyi Akintola (SAN), has expressed shock at the manner President Umaru Yar’Adua handed over the oil rich Bakassi Penisula to the nieghbouring Central African country, Cameroon, saying the ceded part of the country could still be regained.

He placed the options before the people of Bakassi that they had to act with self-determination by opting to become an independent state, arguing that both International Human Rights Charter and African Human Rights Charter recognized such action.

Speaking with newsmen in Ibadan shortly after he was conferred with the chieftaincy title of Basorun Baamofin of Ibadanland by the Olubadan, Oba Samuel Odulana Odugade I, as part of the first year anniversary of the monarch on the throne over the weekend, Akintola contended that federal government failed woefully to explore all the available options before the handing over.

He stated that the Green Tree Agreement (GTA) signed by former President Olusegun Obasanjo ought to be ratified by the National Assembly, adding that due process was not followed in the ceding of Bakassi to the Cameroon.
“Apart from constitutional provisions, which empower the Senate to ratify the agreement, there is also the Treaty Ratification Acts of 1990, Laws of the Federation which has also been flouted by the federal government.

“Not only that, there was also a court injunction which ordered that the status quo be maintained on the ceding of the oil rich area to Cameroon. I am saying this because if they have read the provisions of the constitution, Treaty Ratification Acts, the ICJ judgment shouldn’t have been executed.
“The truth of the matter is that no plebiscite was conducted for the people of Bakassi to give them opportunity to decide where they would like to belong. They are citizens of this country and federal government is now treating them as if they are animals. “Now suppose they take up arms, there will be internal war. You know, there is a set determination height of every citizen.

The people of Bakassi are citizens of the world; they are entitled to be protected. Has anybody asked them where they wanted to belong? Has plebiscite been conducted? I think Nigeria is sitting on a keg of gun powder. “I hope the people of Bakassi, especially their elites will take p the challenge because until we realize that an injustice against one is an injustice against all, there will be no peace.
“It is possible to reverse the ceding of Bakassi to Cameroon if the people of Bakassi rise up to the challenge, resist the ceding out of self-determination. United Nations Charter recognizes that, the African Human Rights Charter recognizes that, if possible they should ask to become an Independent state, may be that will gladden the hearts of Nigerians.

“Let me ask you a question, how many ICJ judgment has United States of America obeyed? How many has Israel obeyed over Middle East issue? How many has Britain obeyed? Have you forgotten the Guatemala case? “Even just few days ago, United States disobeyed its own law over the settlement of Guatemala. So, what are we talking about if the Western nations, who are forcing these things down our throats, are disobeying the UN resolutions or ICJ judgments? You see, quite a number of time we play the ostrich by hiding our head inside the sand and leaving our entire body outside. We should recognize that Nigerians are intelligent enough to know between the lines.

“It seems Nigerian leaders don’t read and it is very unfortunate. Most of the time, we run government of the illiterate by the illiterate for the enlightened; it is very unfortunate that people would use political expediency to do things that basically not in the interest of Nigeria
While faulting the argument of Mr. Olurotimi Akeredolu (SAN) that the decision of ICJ is irreversible and must be obeyed, the counsel to the All Nigeria People Party (ANPP) gubernatorial candidate in Oyo State during April 14, 2007 polls, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, the Action Congress (AC) gubernatorial candidate in Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and the embattled Ondo State Labour Party (LP) governorship candidate, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, said that Nigeria is a signatory to United Nations Human Rights Charter and the African Human Rights Charter.
Akintola reasoned that the federal government might have signed away Bakassi out of political expediency and to massage the political ego of some powerful political class which included former ministers who had been mounting negative foreign campaigns against the government.

Anonymous said...

Bakassi: Senators seek reduction of President’s power to sign treaties
By Oluwole Josiah, Abuja
Published: Wednesday, 20 Aug 2008
Some members of the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs have called for the amendment of Sections 12 of the 1999 Constitution in order to check the powers of the President to sign treaties and other international agreements on behalf of Nigeria.

Skip to next paragraph

Olusola Fabiyi
Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba, SAN

Our Correspondent
Senator Ewah Henshaw

The senators spoke on Tuesday against the backdrop of the tranfer of Bakassi Peninsula to Cameroun by the Federal Government last Thursday.

The Presidency had argued that the handover of the oil-rich territory was in line with the International Court of Justice judgment, the subsequent Green Tree Agreement and to show respect for all treaties entered into by Nigeria.

The GTA was signed in 2006 by Nigeria and Cameroun after a series of negotiations on how to ensure a hitch-free ceding of the Peninsula.

The transfer, however, drew condemnations from prominent Nigerians and groups who argued that government needed to respect the ruling of a Federal High Court, Abuja, which temporarily halted the transfer of the peninsula.

Some also argued that since the National Assembly had not approved the GTA, the Presidency had no right to cede the territory.

Section 12 (1,2,3) states thus, “No treaty between the Federation and any other country shall have the force of law to the extent to which any such treaty has been enacted into law by the National Assembly.

“The National Assembly may make laws for the Federation or any part thereof with respect to matters not included in the Exclusive Legislative List for the purpose of implementing a treaty.

“A bill for an Act of the National Assembly passed pursuant to the provisions of subsection (2) of this section shall not be presented to the President for assent, and shall not be enacted unless it is ratified by a majority of all the House of Assembly in the Federation.”

A member of the committee, Senator Victor Ndoma-Egba (SAN), said the provision suggested that the President had the powers to sign a treaty or enter into any bilateral or multilateral agreement before seeking the endorsement of the legislature.

Ndoma-Egba, who is also the Deputy Leader of the Senate, said the provision greatly limited the role of the legislature in such matters.

“The provision is absurd. It is like putting the cart before the horse,” he said.

The lawmaker, therefore, recommended that since the situation had cost Nigeria a part of its territory, there should henceforth be collaboration between the Executive and the Legislature on such matters.

Ndoma-Egba was not certain of what use the report of the committee would be to the Senate and the GTA in the light of the completion of handover of Bakassi.

“You can imagine the problem we will have on our hands if the Senate refuses to ratify the agreement,” he said.

Another member of the committee, Senator Sule Ajibola, lamented that events of the Bakassi had overtaken the ratification exercise.

He said, “I don‘t think anything can come of it anymore.” He then suggested that the law that gave powers to the President to commit the country by signing a treaty should be reviewed.

Ajibola said, ”The procedure should have been that the President brings the matter before the National Assembly for approval before signing the treaty and then the final step will be domestication, this should be the process and we should ensure that the amendment of the constitution reflects it.”

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Communication, Senator Sylvester Anyanwu, in his comment, said since the National Assembly had commenced the process of amending the constitution, it would pay serious attention to the issues raised in section 12.

He said, ”There should be a marriage between the Legislature and the Executive. I wonder why the President should not from the start carry along the National Assembly in signing the agreement, when he is aware that he would eventually bring the document to the legislature for ratification.”

But Senator Bassey Ewa-Henshaw said Section 12 of the constitution did not expressly empower the President to enter into any treaty without recourse to the National Assembly.

He said, ”It is the President that interpreted the section that way. The section actually said that the National Assembly should ratify the agreement before it becomes enforceable in the country.

”Although the section is silent on whether the President should seek the consent of the National Assembly first, it is his responsibility to get the Legislature involved in the process of signing any treaty. If he decides not to do so, that is his fault.”

Although he agreed that there was need for a constitutional statement on the issue, he reasoned that it would not have been the case since the constitution could not provide for everything.

Anonymous said...

Seek review of ICJ judgment on Bakassi, lawyer tells FG
Tuesday, August 19, 2008

More Stories on This Section

The ongoing debate at the National Assembly about the ratification of the controversial Green Tree Agreement, otherwise called Marwa Declaration between Nigeria and the Republic of Cameroon has courted the ire of many maritime law experts.

One of such persons is Dr. Kinsley Ekwere, a German- based Nigerian maritime lawyer, who says giving ratification to the controversial treaty may act as a reversal of the legal stand the former Minister of Justice, Chief Bola Ajibola adopted during the International Court of Justice judgment on the disputed Bakassi Peninsula, which was ceded to Cameroon.

Ekwere is saying that the ICJ judgment against Nigeria was faulty and illegal because it lacked the basic ingredient of such international maritime boundary decision.

He told Daily Sun recently: “Marwa Declaration heavily relied upon by the ICJ to delimit the territorial boundaries of the two countries, does not have a datum. Failure to establish a datum is a fundamental issue, which could find a ground for a revision of the judgment.

“The present plea by the former Attorney-General of the Federation, Chief Bola Ajibola for the Green Tree Agreement to be ratified by the National Assembly is unhelpful as he gave a minority judgment in favour of Nigeria, while he was at the ICJ when the judgment was entered. In which case, it could be more helpful for him to stand on his former ground. His current plea, if acceded to will lend credence to the judgment which was faulty and an illegality, ab-initio.”
Ekwere insisted that Nigeria could get back Bakassi if it initiated a case for a review of the ICJ judgment.

He hinged his argument on the absence of a datum at the time the judgment was entered, and which he said invalidated whatever decision was taken with regard Nigeria/Cameroon maritime boundary delineation.
He said the Nigeria’s pitiable position after the ICJ Judgment was what took him to Europe to study international maritime law and attend conferences at which the judgment was not only x- rayed but dumped as trash by maritime law experts.

“In 2003, one of the teachers from the United Nations came and expressed anger that ICJ did a poor job in that judgment. It was not until 2004 when I did an internship at the World Court in Hamburg that I discovered that the international community was not very happy about that judgment. I was in the symposium as of right, because I was doing my internship at the World Court. Though not even one diplomat from Nigeria was present at the symposium, but it was very important in that the issue of the delimitation of maritime boundary between Cameron and Nigeria was topical.

“They brought in an expert from the international boundaries unit of the University of Dunham. His name is Prof. Pratt. Fortunately or unfortunately, most of the judges who were at the World Court attended the conference. And also a judge from France, his name is Jeri Peri Cot, who was one of the people who represented Cameroon in the case, had shortly before the symposium commenced, persuaded me to prevail on Nigeria to accept the judgment. The moment the symposium was underway, the entire weight of opinion was on him, because experts wondered why a court could give such judgment in the 21st century.

“Now ICJ relied so much on the Marwa Declaration of 1973. That declaration does not have a datum. And without a datum, it is practically impossibly to delimit maritime boundary. A datum is a science of precision. The court has the responsibility to establish a common datum between Nigeria and Cameroon as it were. But that was not done. So it is impossible to implement ICJ judgment between Nigerian and Cameroon because there is no datum.

“Recently Singapore and Malaysia have a similar problem. In 1973 too, they had entered into a boundary agreement. They now discover that their agreement does not have a datum; they simply threw it away. So in my opinion, Nigerian lacked the expertise at that time to have negotiated that boundary in 1973. And if we had experts; they would have pointed out that flaw.”

Ekwere is of the opinion that Nigeria, having implement a greater part of the ICJ judgment as a condition precedent for a review, can now initiate a review of the faulty judgment, which it has up to 2012 to do, instead of being hoodwinked through the National Assembly into ratifying an equally faulty Marwa Declaration.

“In my own opinion, the ratification process going on in the National Assembly should be halted until we have assembled experts to initiate a review of that judgment. And those experts should not be experts only in international law. Law of the sea is a specialized area - very technical. Delimitation of maritime boundary has three components - political, technical and legal. As far as political and legal components are concerned, the court did well. But technically, it did a poor job.”

Now, all said and done, can Nigeria get back Bakassi? Ekwere gives an emphatic Yes, adding, “ provided Nigeria does it groundwork, assemble experts and proceed on a review; and again, ignore Ajibola’s antics.”