Some natives of the Federal Capital Territory have warned that Nigeria is on the verge of experiencing another version of the xenophobic attacks witnessed in South Africa, if nothing is done to address the injustices meted on the original indigenes of the territory.
A group under the aegis of the Coalition FCT Indigenous Group told a Press conference in Abuja that the continuous marginalization of the original inhabitant of the FCT is gradually inciting them towards xenophobic tendencies.
The Spokesman of the group, comrade Yusuf Yunusa, said undue actions like the continuous disregard of court judgments and the forceful takeover of their ancestral land by the Nigerian Army is threatening the peaceful relationship that exist between Abuja natives and visitors.
Yunusa while blaming the federal government for failing to address some of the issues of marginalization brought before it, said this could breed doubt and mistrust among the people.
He said, “For years now we have been agitating for the rights of a state statues for the FCT as enshrined in the constitution, but our request have always been turned down by successive administrations. We have also employed every peaceful means to ask that a ministerial slot be allocated to the FCT, or even a mayorship statue be given to the FCT, but all that have been denied by successive governments.
“We are hospitable people by nature and that is why we whole heartedly embraced the idea of moving the nation’s capital to Abuja. We have welcomed all Nigerians to our land but we see that our hospitality is taken for granted. The Nigerian Army, for instance, wants to forcefully take over our ancestral land around the airport road to Zuba despite court rulings against that action.
“The truth is there is so much a people can take. We feel our hospitality is taken for granted and there is little anyone can do to stop a people who feel their ancestral land is forcefully being taken from them.”
He added that the disregard for the rule of law and the actions of the Nigerian Army may have led to some form of mistrust in the indigenes, as they are now suspicious of visitors.
“It is unfortunate that our people are now becoming suspicious of visitors, and that is not good for peaceful coexistence. The federal government must do something to address this issue because the continuous denial of a people’s right can push them towards xenophobic tendencies,” he warned.