To mark this year’s World Indigenous People’s Day, the Resource Centre for Human Rights and Civic Education (CHRICED), and the Ona of Abaji, Dr Adamu Baba Yunusa, have appealed to relevant authorities to assuage the sufferings of original inhabitants of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja.
CHRICED’s Executive Secretary, Ibrahim Zikirullahi, during a courtesy visit to the Ona of Abaji, Wednesday in Abuja, said they would not relent in drumming the challenges of original inhabitants into the ears of government personnel.
To this end, he said CHRICED would put up national stakeholders dialogue on August 6, 2022, where issues affecting the people would be looked into.
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According to him, “On Monday, August, 8, will be the Grand Rally of FCT Original Inhabitants at the Old Parade Ground Abuja, while the D-Day of the celebration will feature a Regional Conference, an exhibition and an awards dinner for Heroes and Heroines of the FCT Original Inhabitants struggle.
“As a Cohort of civil society organizations working to ensure the promotion and protection of the rights of indigenous peoples, these activities are not being organized as an end in themselves.
“They all present peaceful, lawful and effective options to call on stakeholders in government to stand on the side of justice, fairness and inclusion.
“As we count down to the Day, therefore, our goal is to ensure the voices of FCT Original Inhabitants resonate in the global context of the struggle for the rights of indigenous peoples.
“Finally, in terms of what we can all do in our individual capacities to advance the cause of FCT OIs, there are many simple and effective steps.
“One of such steps, which we are currently taking as a Cohort is to record a less than one-minute video with a mobile phone, stating our support for FCT Original Inhabitants.”
On his part, Yunusa, who is the Chairman of the Council of FCT’s Traditional Ruler, pledged his commitment to support the course.
He lamented that while 36 states enjoy sufficient legislative representation at the National Assembly, the people of the FCT grapple with 2 representatives.
“We are going to cooperate with you because we have had several discussions with government that have remained unresolved. While other states are having over 5 legislators we have just two. It is not fair,” he said.