FG should review Bakassi issue—Militants

Militants, under the aegis of the Bakassi Strike Force, have again, vowed to fight with the last drop of their blood to reclaim the oil -rich Bakassi Peninsular, which was ceded to the Republic of Cameroon.

The leader of the group, General Simple Benjamin ,who said  this in a telephone chat with the Nigerian Tribune, in Calabar, the state capital, on Thursday, said though, the judgment of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), had ceded Bakassi to Cameroon but that they are ready to lay their lives to reclaim the ceded territory.

He, however, called on the Federal Government to revisit the issue of Bakassi by putting up a realistic resettlement plan for the displaced people, whom according to him, had been going through severe hunger and starvation due to the loss of their ancestral home.

“Let it be on record that we would not leave Bakassi to go like that, we will fight to the very last drop of our blood to make sure that our land is reclaimed”, he said.

The Bakassi issue must be revisited; something must be done for the people of Bakassi. We are not fighting for our selfish interest; we are fighting that government should  revisit the issue of Bakassi.  The government should look into the plight of our people.  We are human beings and our voice must be heard.”

Expressing optimism that  ICJ judgment could be reversed, he said, “If you have been following events, there are fresh facts which have come out concerning the ruling of ICJ.

In litigation, when there are fresh facts, you have the right to revisit issues. We want them to first listen to some of the issues which have been put on the table.

“This is why former President Goodluck Jonathan gave specific directives to the  former Attorney -General that he should look into some of these issues but one way or the other, it was swept under the carpet.

“They should revisit these issues in a competent court of jurisdiction and I believe that something would be done. If the land cannot be returned, then, there  should be proper resettlement where we can still call our home.

But a Calabar-based legal practitioner, Mba Ukweni, said since the Nigerian government could not file an appeal against ICJ judgment within a specified period, the issue of Bakassi had been foreclosed.