By Robinson Tombari Sibe
Tomorrow, the electorates in the UK will be heading to the polls to decide whether UK should continue to be part of the EU or not. While those who want Britain to REMAIN argue that Britain is stronger in the EU, the Brexits (BRitish EXIT) argue that their powers and potentials are watered down with their continuous membership of the EU.
You may recall that this is the second referendum held in the UK in the last 3 years. In 2014, a referendum was held for the continuous stay or not, of Scotland in the union. Eleven referendums have been held in the UK, since the first in 1973; tomorrow’s will be the 12th. No one was jailed for treason, for calling for a referendum.
In Nigeria, despite the clarity of the U.N. Rights of indigenous people (and despite Nigeria being a signatory to the U.N. Charter and statutes), any group or anyone who questions their continuous stay, role or status in the Republic is tossed to jail and charged for treason. No chance is given for a referendum. When you question our current structure, which is brutally oppressive and evidently unsustainable, you are called a secessionist and threatened with jail term; no chance for a referendum. When the people of Nigeria Delta makes a case for resource control, they are hounded and bullied by federal apparatchiks; no chance for a referendum. Any attempt to call for a discussion, will earn you an “enemy of state” tag.
Today, we continue in our Republic, pretending all is well. We are in an abusive marriage where discussions of any sort, whether it be for our good or not, are summarily prohibited.
Tomorrow will come and go, the UK electorates will cast their votes and have their say, while we remain strapped in the “electric chair” of our Republic, with no chance to adjust our “seatbelts”. We are a people with no rights. We practice a brand of democracy that is not democratic. The vital part of our democracy was amputated at birth. In fact, our case was congenital. Who will help us with a corrective/reconstructive surgery?