The umbrella body for indigenous people of the FCT also said it is ready to work with Senator Bala Mohammed-led Federal Capital Territory Authority (FCTA) and other stakeholders towards achieving a strong participation in the national conference.
In a statement by its president, Pastor DanladiJeji, OIDA applauded the federal government’s convocation of the national conference, adding that the group is well prepared to be part of it.
The statement reads in part, “The national conference will give the Abuja indigenous people the opportunity to bring the issues of their statelessness, marginalization and forceful usurpation of their lands without compensation by the Nigerian state to the limelight.
“OIDA remains unrelenting in its avowed and dogged mission in ensuring that the original inhabitants of Abuja’s voices are not only sounded loud and clear, but that they be heard and fully given their due and right of place in the Nigerian state.”
The association, while calling on the FCT minister to fast-track the nomination of delegates representing the FCT in the confab, said the conference provides an avenue for Nigerians to air their grievances – real or imagined – about the continuous corporate existence of the nation.
Jeji said the association’s Board of Trustees chaired by AlhajiAbubakarWodi, met on February 5, at a consultative meeting to articulate amongst other things, ideas for selection of FCT’s nominees and agenda to the said conference.
He said the association resolved that, “OIDA with its broad-based and grassroots’ reach and membership cutting across the nine original indigenous tribes and the entire territory of Abuja, is a major stakeholder in the FCT. OIDA avails itself to the FCT Administration to partake in FCT’s nominees selection process, FCT’s agenda formulation and FCT’s full participation at the conference.”
The association said it sent its resolution to the FCT Minister on February 7.