As the government of Nigeria hands over the oil-rich Bakassi peninsula to the government of Cameroon, in the words of President Umaru Yar’Adua, it’s ”very painful for all” but it must go on as planned. Nigeria must display and maintain a steady hand and implement the agreement in concord and harmony. As a lawful nation and law abiding nation, Nigeria has the obligation to abide to the rulings of the world court at Hague.
Nigeria being the leader of Africa, she must lead by example. Nigerians may not be in support of the hand over but Nigeria must respect the international order and rule of law. By this magnanimous act Nigeria reassured the world that peace is the cornerstone of diplomacy in Africa. Africans are not waiting on foreign intruders to lecture us about the brotherhood of man and the rule of law. This is a powerful strategic move on behalf of Nigeria to project our generic humanity with their Cameroonian counterpart.
The only tactical blunder was not formulating and presenting a comprehensive case to the judges at The Hague with regards to the rights of Nigerians residing at Bakassi peninsula and the issue of property rights of the indigenes of Bakassi. Nigerian and Cameroonian governments must put heads together and resettle the misplaced people of Bakassi, even offering dual citizenship if they ask for it. But all things being equal, Nigeria has a reason to be proud of the superior act of settling the issue without spilling blood and by showing leadership to the world in this affirmative conflict resolutions.
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