My stand on amalgamation and secession

Before independence in 1960, we are all aware of the 1914 amalgamation and the claim of lack of consent in the merging of the southern and northern protectorate.

However, while the nation was preparing for independence, any region not pleased with the continuous stay in Nigeria had the opportunity of walking away before independence.

The west could walk away and stay on its own. The east could do the same and so is the north.

As a matter of fact, the north wanted to walk away, due to perceived incompatibility and it made this position known publicly, but the west and east prevailed on the North to stay. Dr  Nnamdi Azikwe and Chief Obafemi Awolowo told Sardauna of Sokoto, we are the same and we can work on our areas of disagreement.

Sardauna accepted and we all became one nation with the thumb print of God.

The perceived lack of consent, in the 1914 amalgamation, was corrected prior to the independence and all region consented to Nigeria’s nationhood.

Even when Sardauna and Awolowo said we should have secession clause in the constitution, incase any region is displeased and want to exit the union, Dr Azikwe argued otherwise.

He insisted that once we have agreed to stay together as one, the nation should become indivisible and indissoluble under God and every region agreed to this indivisibility of our great country.

So, people who insisted that Nigeria is indivisible and indissoluble before independence in 1960, and worked against insertion of secession clause in the independent constitution, without remembering the 1914 amalgamation, cannot turn around and be complaining or raise question about the amalgamation, neither can they be asking for secession, after everyone had invested their political, economic and emotional capital in the nation.

Therefore, we must make the nation work for all, inline with its founding principle of indivisibility and indissolubility.

Abdulrazaq Hamzat can be reached at

Abdulrazaq Hamzat writes from Abuja, Nigeria


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