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Musings From Abroad

Nigerian separatist, Adeyinka Shoyemi jailed in UK over inciting social media posts

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London-based Nigerian, Adeyinka Shoyemi, the acclaimed President of the Young Yoruba for Freedom (YYF), will be cooling his heels in a London prison as he has been sentenced to four and a half years’ imprisonment for posting messages on social media encouraging violence in Nigeria.

Shoyemi was first arrested in August 2019 after members of the public raised concerns to the police about social media posts that contained comments aimed at particular ethnic groups based in Nigeria.

Shoyemi in his many social media posts, some of which africanewswatch.com confirmed online, especially on YouTube had declared that the Nigerian government must return “to true and fiscal federalism that is based on regional autonomy on or before the election.”

Another source quoted him saying “The Young Yorubas for Freedom will declare for Oduduwa Republic and start a war with the use of chemical, biological, and even radiological weapons against the Federal Government of Nigeria if its President orders an attack on the sovereignty of the Yoruba people whenever we declare for the Oduduwa Republic.

“The days our parents were protesting with their fists in the face of armoured tanks and being killed, arrested, imprisoned, and exiled by the Hausa/Fulani are over. Our generation has learned from their mistakes. It is Oduduwa Republic or organized violence.” The source concluded.

The Met’s Counter Terrorism Command arrested the Yoruba agitator after his social media account, Adeyinka Grandson, was traced to him. He was found guilty on 30 November 2021 of eight counts of inciting racial hatred after a trial at Southwark Crown Court.

Nigeria has had a number of separatist agendas spring up since her political independence in 1960, but the cry for self-determination amongst various ethnic-based groups has been more amplified in the heterogeneous West African country since the current President Muhamadu Buhari came into power in 2015.  From Sunday Igboho led Yoruba-Nation agenda to Nnamdi Kanu’s adventures with The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), one thing is sure, the peculiar plural nature of the Nigerian state must be better managed.

Musings From Abroad

Russian state company, Malian junta negotiate nuclear deal

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According to Rosatom, the Russian state nuclear business and the ruling military junta in Mali have signed three cooperation agreements and discussed several projects, including the construction of a low-power nuclear power plant with Russian design, on Wednesday.

For years, Rosatom has been pursuing a charm offensive in Africa in an attempt to secure business through the signing of cooperation agreements with nations all over the continent. As part of that effort, closer ties have been made with juntas in the Sahel region of West Africa, who have retreated from conventional Western allies after seizing power in coups before 2020.

Junta-led administrations in the West African states of Burkina Faso, Guinea, Niger Republic, and Mali have all tilted towards Russia for military ties, severing relations with former colony France and its international ally, the United States.

In a statement, Rosatom claimed that it had met with Assimi Goita, the head of Mali’s junta, on July 2 and 3. It has talks with junta authorities in charge of energy, education, and economics.

The statement added that in addition to talking about a “strategic project to build a Russian-designed low-power nuclear power plant in Mali,” junta leaders and Rosatom also discussed geological exploration projects and solar power generating.

Regarding the projected low-power nuclear power station that might be constructed in Mali, Rosatom withheld information.

“The parties agreed to continue maintaining close contacts and periodically coordinate positions as joint work progresses,” it said.

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Musings From Abroad

UN review shows Uganda supported the M23 rebels in the Congo

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According to a United Nations report released on Monday, the Ugandan army has assisted the M23 rebel group that is active in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo.

This comes as growing hostilities in the area heighten concerns about the possibility of a new all-out war. Uganda denied involvement and stated that it worked closely with the government forces in the Congo.

Long-standing accusations by the United Nations that Rwanda supports the M23, which has taken control of significant areas of the mineral-rich eastern Congo, have been refuted by Rwanda.

The conflict has torn through the Congo for many years. In 1996 and 1998, Uganda and Rwanda launched invasions under the pretext of defending themselves against regional militias. Uganda and Congolese forces continue to work together to combat a rebel group in Uganda.

Since 2022, the Tutsi-led M23 rebels have been fighting a new insurgency in the militia-ridden east of Congo. A regional force sent in November 2022 to oversee a truce with the M23 included Ugandan soldiers. Last year, Congolese officials demanded that the military leave their country, citing its inefficiency.

“Since the resurgence of the M23 crisis, Uganda has not prevented the presence of M23 and Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) troops on its territory or passage through it,” the U.N. Security Council’s Group of Experts said in the report, which was sent to the U.N. Security Council Sanctions Committee at the end of April and then to members of the Security Council in June.

The UN panel added that it had proof of active military and military intelligence backing for M23, with M23 leaders—including the banned Sultani Makenga—visiting Uganda for meetings.

When contacted by Reuters, Deo Akiiki, the deputy spokesman for Uganda’s armed forces, stated that these accusations were untrue and unfairly blamed the army of the East African nation during its most favourable relationship with the Congolese troops (FARDC).

“It would be mad for us to destabilise the same area we are sacrificing it all to have it stable,” Akiiki said.

 

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