Regarding the longstanding boundary dispute between Nigeria and Cameroon, the House of Representatives ad hoc committee on international boundary disputes has issued a directive for the immediate cession of the Sina area in Michika Local Government Area of Adamawa State to the Republic of Cameroon.
Chairing the committee, Beni Lar, made this ruling during a hearing dedicated to addressing the ongoing boundary conflicts stretching from the Lake Chad region down to the Cross River estuaries.
The primary objective of the hearing was to evaluate the role of the military, paramilitary, and security agencies in safeguarding Nigeria’s borders and territorial integrity.
Key participants in the hearing included Adamu Adaji, the Director General of the National Boundary Commission (NBC); Adamu Kamale, a representative from the Sina Area; Beatrice Jedy-Agba, the Solicitor-General of the Federation, representing the Attorney General of the Federation; and representatives from various security agencies.
Lar emphasized, “We must engage with the relevant communities and the boundary commission to find a solution. We need to conduct a fact-finding mission before intervening. The communities have rights that must be considered, and this demarcation should be put on hold until the disputes are resolved. We will visit Adamawa and prepare a comprehensive report.”
The committee’s engagement with the Sina Area follows a similar process carried out along the DANARE-BIAJUA AXIS in Cross River State. This inclusion was prompted by a request from Dauda Nyampa and approved by the Speaker of the House of Representatives.
The committee’s second focal point was the role of military, paramilitary, and security agencies in ensuring the security of Nigeria’s borders and territorial integrity. Lar highlighted the absence of security posts or barracks along Nigeria’s land borders, contrasting with the situation on the Cameroonian side, underscoring the need for this interactive session with security agencies.
Adamu Adaji, the Director General of the NBC, clarified that the demarcation process adheres to a ruling from the International Court of Justice (ICJ). He explained that the sub-commission on demarcation has installed a total of 2,214 boundary pillars between Nigeria and Cameroon.
“The boundary between Adamawa State and Cameroon, as determined by the ICJ, is based on historical treaties and agreements made during the colonial era. The court upheld these treaties and mandated the use of existing documents to re-establish the boundary. This is not a new boundary but one that has existed for a long time,” Adaji stated.
In contrast, Adamu Kamale, the representative of the Sina Area, asserted that the disputed region belongs to Nigeria and is not a settlement. Kamale expressed frustration that the community had not been adequately considered in the demarcation process.
The House of Representatives committee’s decision to recommend ceding the Sina Area to Cameroon marks a significant development in the ongoing boundary dispute, raising questions about its implications for affected communities and Nigeria’s territorial integrity. The issue is expected to continue garnering national and international attention as it unfolds.