A Civil Society group, Nigerians for United Morocco (NUM), has condemned President Goodluck Jonathan for rolling out the red carpet to receive the a separatist leader, Algeria-based Mr. Mohammed Abdelaziz who visited Abuja recently.
Nigerians for United Morocco (NUM) in a press statement signed by its national president, Alhaji Mustapha Sani, noted that it was provocative and regrettable that Abdelaziz, the purported “President” of the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic and leader of Polisario Front was given a state welcome by President Goodluck Jonathan and the ruling party, PDP.
“The problem of the Western Sahara, involving the Kingdom of Morocco and the Polisario Front is a long running one, and has been through and still under series of international mediation. Apart from the maximum separatist ambition of the Polisario Front, the group noted that the Kingdom of Morocco has put forth a constructive and realistic proposal that encompasses a high level of autonomy for the region to realise a self rule for the people in the territory within the frame work of Morocco’s sovereignty.
The group also questioned the foreign policy interest of Nigeria in hosting a leader whose separatist movement is dedicated to dismembering a sister African country, saying that the argument of internal colonialism as a selling point of the Polisario can be likened to the clamour by Nigeria’s separatist groups such as MASSOB and OPC.
The group said further that “if every group that cries internal colonialism is granted a statehood, one would wonder what a chaos the current African map will be and added that “whatever may be the justification for the cause of the Polisario Front, Nigeria has no reason to play the pawn in the chess game of a separatist organisation encouraged and supported openly by Morocco’s regional rival, Algeria.”
The group stressed that hosting the Polisario Front leader in Abuja was a grossly ill- thought out and its implications were neither objectively weighed nor analysed. It therefore warned Nigeria to desist from encouraging separation in another country and advised Abuja to tender an apology to the Kingdom of Morocco for this major slip directed at the sovereignty and territorial integrity of a brotherly African State. It however urged Rabat not to over react to the provocations but to remain calm as majority of Nigerians are in favour of united and indivisible Morocco.