Thursday, April 22, 2021 3:30 pm
There is a shouting match between Nigeria and its former colonial master, the United Kingdom. The bone of contention is the latter’s decision to grant asylum to members of the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB).
Trouble started on Wednesday, 21 April, when Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, said the planned asylum for IPOB and MASSOB members by the United Kingdom was “disrespectful and a sabotage to the fight against terrorism in the country.”
However, Britain did not allow Mohammed’s missile to hit target before intercepting it and firing its own. Christopher Ogunmodede, the Senior Press and Public Affairs Officer, British High Commission, Abuja, said: “The UK has a proud history of providing protection to those who need it, in accordance with our international obligations under the Refugee Convention and European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).
“Our country’s policy and information notes are published on the gov.uk website. They are kept under constant review and updated periodically – an update to the Biafra separatist note is expected shortly.
“We publish them since our decisions can be appealed in the immigration courts, which are public, so it is clearer and fairer for all involved (applicants, their lawyers, judges, stakeholders such as the UNHCR) to know what our position and evidence base is.
“All asylum and human rights claims from Nigerian nationals are carefully considered on their individual merits in accordance with our international obligations.”