HEADLINE | Posted: Tuesday, July 6, 2021
By Chimaobi Nwaiwu, Chinonso Alozie & Steve Oko
The Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, yesterday, described as a lame denial, the Kenyan Ambassador to Nigeria, Wilfred Machage’s attempt to exonerate Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta, from the circumstance that led to the alleged abduction and extradition of its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, to Nigeria, saying that it has incontrovertible evidence against Kenyetta’s involvement.
IPOB alleged that the Kenyan President betrayed Mazi Kanu because of financial inducement by Nigerian government and promise of oil business, describing the Kenyan government denial as a smart but belated attempt to cover up its atrocities.
This came as Nobel laureate, Wole Soyinka, said Nnamdi Kanu was kidnapped by the federal government and his arrest was wrong.
Equally, Coalition of South East Youth Leaders, COSEYL, has asked the federal government to immediately return the abducted Leader of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra IPOB Nnamdi Kanu to Britain where he is a citizen.
In Britain, some southeast elders have stormed the United Kingdom Parliament in London to protest against President Muhammadu Buhari’s genocide in their region while urging the British authorities to prevail on Nigeria to halt the killings.
In a related development, the Minister of Justice and Solicitor-General of the Government of Alberta, Canada, Kelechi Madu, has slammed the Nigerian Minister of Justice and Attorney General, Abubakar Malami, over the re-arrest of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu.
Meantime, four suspected members of the Eastern Security Network, ESN, of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, yesterday, were paraded for allegedly planning to plant explosives in a military checkpoint along Owerri/Orlu road in Imo State.
Kenyatta’s involvement in Kanu’s abduction— IPOB
A statement by IPOB Media and Publicity Secretary, Emma Powerful, entitled “We have incontrovertible evidence of how Uhuru Kenyatta betrayed our leader because of oil money” maintained that Kenyan security forces abducted Mazi Kanu at the Nairobi International Airport and tortured him for eight days before handing him over to Nigeria government for extradition.
IPOB statement read in part: “The attention of the global family of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, ably led by our great leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, has been drawn to the lame denial by the Kenyan Ambassador to Nigeria, Wilfred Machage, of Kenya’s involvement in the criminal abduction of our leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
“This denial is another smart but belated attempt to cover up their atrocities but unfortunately for them, we already have incontrovertible evidence of how the dirty deal between Nigeria and Kenya was struck. Our intelligence gathering has revealed all those involved in the heinous crime.
“The fact remains that Kenyan security forces abducted our leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, at the Nairobi International Airport and tortured him for eight days. Our Leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu was traveling with British passport.
“Contrary to claims by the Nigeria Government, our leader was not traveling with any Nigeria passport because he is not a Nigerian. He was born in Biafra and he has since publicly renounced any connections with Nigeria.
“From our intelligence, Kenya betrayed our leader because of financial inducement and offer of oil by Nigeria. The negotiations was midwifed by the Nigerian Ambassador in Nairobi who bargained with President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Kenyan Immigration Authorities. Uhuru Kenyatta was blinded by the oil money offer and he consented to the wickedness.
“We have it on good authority that Kenyan Police tortured our leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, for eight days without food. The Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta and Ambassador to Nigeria, should be ashamed of themselves for betraying an innocent man because of money. But we assure them that they will pay heavily for this treachery!”
FG kidnapped Nnamdi Kanu, his arrest was wrong —Soyinka
Speaking with BBC Pidgin yesterday, the literary icon said there would be an uproar in the country if the truth of how Kanu was arrested becomes known.
“It’s not for me to tell the president to prepare itself because it’s going to be a huge squawk when the truth about how Kanu was arrested comes out.
“People are alleging this or that. That is one phase whether Nigeria has acted outside international law,” Soyinka said.
“The second issue, however, has to do with Kanu’s conduct outside the nation. There’s been a level of hate rhetoric which has been unfortunate, from Kanu. Hate rhetoric is an issue that can only be judged by the laws of any nation.
“Was it right ‘to have been kidnapped?’ You can say intercepted as much as you want but I think Kanu was kidnapped. That is wrong internationally and morally.”
Commenting on the reactions that have trailed the swiftness with which the federal government arrested Kanu, the Nobel laureate said the federal government has not shown the same eagerness in going after bandits and insurgents.
“The government cannot wash itself clean on what seems to be a kind of comparative energy in pursuing the destabilised forces in the nation,” he said.
“If we take ourselves back, once when I threw a challenge to Buhari, what I expect from a true leader is to issue an order, give a deadline that any illegal occupant of any villages, farms is given 48hours to quit after which the mighty forces of the nation will be unleashed on them. It was ignored.
“Years later, he came to say ‘we will respond to these people in the language they understand’. This is what I expected him to have said years ago at the beginning of the insurgency.
“Their leadership, the Miyetti Allah, should have been arrested years ago, long before IPOB was declared a terrorist organisation.”
He said rather, the Miyetti Allah group has continued to act unchecked while the federal government has refused to “mount the same energy against them”.
“So people are right to say there has been an unequal and irregular approach to security and enforcement in this nation,” he added.
He advised the federal government to stop the blame game and take action.”
South-East elders protest at UK Parliament
The South-East leaders in a video of the protest as obtained by SaharaReporters, noted that the government was fuelling the crisis in the region.
It also accused the government of allowing attackers in form of herdsmen to maim and kill innocent people.
One of the elders said: “It has been a long time, all of us came together. And now, we are here. This is the British parliament. This is the House of Commons and House of Lords, the mother of all parliaments. We are bringing this letter because of the problem in Igboland and the South-East generally, which can be classified as genocide. People are being killed daily.
“The humiliation of the Igbo and South-East in Nigeria is unbelievable. Young boys and young girls are marched out of their houses by fully armed soldiers.
“They go into their houses and arrest them and they disappear and nobody asks any questions. It should stop. It must not be allowed to continue.
“We are appealing to the members of the British parliament to please prevail on the Buhari government. We cannot go to our farms, the herdsmen are there, killing and maiming our people.”
Igbo people in the UK have been protesting against various issues and decisions in Nigeria, including the recent arrest of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, who is in the custody of the Department of State Services in Abuja.
Malami, a disgrace to rule of law, says Canadian Justice Minister
Madu, in a post on his LinkedIn page, said if reports that Kanu was abducted from Kenya were true, Malami was not only a disgrace to the rule of law but also not worthy to be a public officer.
The Canadian official, who is also the Deputy Government House Leader, said Nigeria and Kenya violated international law in the manner Kanu was extradited and called on world leaders to apply appropriate sanctions.
Madu, who demanded the release of Kanu, urged the Nigerian government to ensure his safety.
“The Attorney General of Nigeria, Abubakar Malami is a disgrace to the rule of law and not worthy to be an officer of the court. He has shown himself to be a bigot who does not understand what it means to live in a pluralistic society governed by the dictates of the rule of law,” he wrote.
He also called on the international community and leaders of nations to use all their power to ensure “real consequences for these arbitrary violations of internationally accepted democratic norms and rules that govern civilized people.”
Madu said, “Nigeria is burning, and the people of Nigeria, except those who are holding the country down, want out. You cannot destroy the hope and aspiration of a people destined for greatness and expect them to bow down in servitude.
“You cannot destroy a generation of people and expect them not to fight for their freedom. The power of guns, state-sponsored terrorism will not achieve peace or the preservation of Nigeria.
“The Igbo and other ethnic groups in Nigeria who are calling for Nigeria to be renegotiated do not seek violence or war. They seek peace. They seek progress and the advancement of their people. They seek fairness, safety, equity, and justice for their people.
“They seek the opportunity for their children to grow up and achieve their God-given abundant potential. They seek the rise of a people with the work ethic, intellect and capacity to be a truly global super power on the continent of Africa. They seek dignity over inhumane treatment. They seek life over death.
“Friends of the black world must unite and liberate the people of Nigeria from this bondage and from the claws of corrupt and inept politicians who have no business being near the corridor of Nigeria’s political power.”
Return Nnamdi Kanu to UK, Igbo youth leaders tell FG
COSEYL in a statement jointly signed by its President Goodluck Ibem and Secretary General Kanice Igwe, described the attack as “barbaric and mindless.”
According to the statement, “the true and only killers in the country are the murderous herdsmen/terrorists who kill people all over the country”.
“The federal government has turned a blind eye to their atrocities and are only interested in arresting, tormenting, and dehumanizing innocent citizens who are not of Fulani extraction.
“Government took all the pains and spent enormous resources to bring Nnamdi Kanu from far away Kenya while the Boko Haram terrorists, ISWAP and murderous Fulani herdsmen/terrorists are busy killing Nigerians in their thousands.
“We demand that the Nigerian government should return Nnamdi Kanu to Britain where he is a citizen and if the federal government wishes to extradite him to Nigeria, they must follow due process of extradition according to international law. ”
According to the statement, “the true and only killers in the country are the murderous herdsmen/terrorists who kill people all over the country.”
4 ESN members arrested in Imo
The State Commissioner of Police, Abutu Yaro, confirmed this to newsmen in Owerri.
Yaro said that they were apprehended after ESN members engaged the security forces in a gun battle and in the process, they fell to the superior power of the police force.