July 17, 2014
The march towards the 2015 General Election took an additional dangerous dimension in Kano Wednesday following calls by youths under the auspices of Arewa Youth Development Foundation for the disintegration of Nigeria as a single political entity.
The protests that was held outside the palace of the Emir of Kano shortly after a courtesy call on the monarch, attracted hundreds of youths believed to be students drawn from tertiary institutions in Kano.
The Emir of Kano, Alhaji Muhammadu Sanusi II, appealed for calm and enjoined the youth to imbibe the lesson of peace in their entire endeavors, considering the critical role they play in nation building.
Sanusi II told the protesting youths that “it is only natural for people of different and divergent cultures to live in one entity as a nation, and I enjoin you people to imbibe the lesson of peace considering your role in nation development”.
The youth carrying placards with inscriptions that support the dissolution of the country, held a rally outside the palace and the Secretary General of the Group, Comrade Alfred Solomon who spoke on behalf of the group, declared that their stand was informed by what he called “continued intimidation of Northerners by the federal Government.”
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Some of the placards bore the message “Hold your petro dollars, let everyone go his direction”, Southerners are not welcome here in the north”, “Southerners must Go, Shegu,” “Nigeria belongs to all of us not militants,” and “We say no to Northern identification in southern Nigeria.”
Other telling and provoking messages in the placards also read “Southerners are militants, kidnappers/ rituals, armed robbers, drug pushers, terrorists, sons/daughters are products of baby factory,” which were on display during a protest that lasted one hour.
A prepared speech jointly signed by National President and Secretary General, Barrister Aliyu M Usman, and Alfred Solomon respectively but was read by the Secretary General during the protest urged northerners to “rise and support agitation for peaceful dissolution of this union called Nigeria for every region to go its own way.”
Alfred directed that “we urged all artisans, students, public and private sector servants, traders business holders currently operating, residing or intending to do so in any part of Nigeria to relocate back home within the next two weeks.”
Alfred Solomon in the same vein further advised non Northerners residing in any part of the northern Nigeria to relocate to their various regions of origin within two weeks to make room for accommodating our northern brothers who would be returning home.
Solomon noted that the “measure would bring an end to the mutual suspicion that is presently causing some southern states to demand Northerners to obtain resident permits and perhaps any similar action that may arise from northern state Government as a consequence”.
The rally that was originally schedule to crisis cross designated streets in Kano was cancelled while no reason was given also by the Organizers from cancelling scheduled visit to the Governor, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso at the Government House.
The city is however calm and quiet as residents move about their legitimate businesses without molestation.