As part of the agitation for an independent Yoruba Nation and the dissolution of the amalgamation of Southern and Northern Nigeria, self-determination activists have filed two suits at Federal High Courts in Ado-Ekiti and Osogbo.
They want the judiciary to stop the forthcoming governorship elections in Ekiti and Ondo States scheduled for June and July respectively.
They are praying for a declaration that the current 1999 Constitution of Nigeria is illegal, invalid and of no effect whatsoever because no referendum was conducted before it was enacted.
The members of the umbrella body Ilana Omo Oodua (IOO) Worldwide filed the suit on Wednesday through their lawyer, Tolu Babaleye.
The defendants are the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The activists include IOO leaders, Professor Banji Akintoye, from Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti; his Deputy, Professor Wale Adeniran, from Ile-Ife, Osun State; Ado-Ekiti based medical doctor, Chief Bayo Orire, and 15 others.
The applicants are demanding a total decommissioning of the 1999 Constitution to pave way for a referendum so that the indigenous people of Yoruba can secede.
On Wednesday, IOO spokesman Maxwell Adeleye told the public that INEC does not have the law that can be used to conduct elections “anywhere in Yoruba land, a region within Nigeria”.
“The Ekiti and Osun Governorship Polls and all future elections should be stopped in Yoruba land until a referendum is held for the Yoruba people to decide on the system they want for themselves within Nigeria and whether they even want to remain as Nigerians”, he noted.
Adeleye said they want: “A Declaration that the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as Amended) is invalid, illegal and of no effect whatsoever by reason of its failure to satisfy the essential requirements of a referendum and national consensus expected of a valid Constitution.
“A Declaration that the preamble/introductory passage to the 1999 Constitution inserted into the Constitution by the Military Government which says ‘’we the people of Nigeria have resolved to give ourselves a Constitution’’ is a lie when.”
The suit argues that it was the Military Government that came up with the document and imposed it on the Nigerian people without their contribution.
Others requests are: “A Declaration that no valid elections whether Presidential, Governorship, National and State Assembly or Councillorship elections can be validly held under the said invalid and fraudulent Constitution as one cannot build something on nothing in law and expect it to stand.
“A Declaration that the forthcoming Ekiti State Governorship election which is scheduled to be conducted in June 2022 by the INEC cannot be validly held under the said illegal and invalid 1999 Constitution of Nigeria.
“An Order stopping the holding of the scheduled Ekiti State Governorship election coming up in June 2022 from being held as there is no valid legal framework for such an exercise because the 1999 Constitution (As Amended) under which the said Governorship election is planned to be conducted is illegal, invalid and inherently defective.
“An Order directing the Defendants jointly and severally to stay clear of Ekiti and Osun States in June and July 2022 and suspend with immediate effect the plans and arrangements they have put in place to conduct such an illegal election in Ekiti and Osun States of Nigeria.”
Adeleye called on all Yoruba people, especially, Self-determination activists in Ekiti and Osun to mobilize themselves and ensure that they are present in courts in Osogbo and Ado-Ekiti whenever the cases are called for mention.